North East charity buys 23 defibrillators for the NHS Trust in battle against coronavirus.

A North East charity set up to raise funds for a leading heart hospital has joined the battle against Covid-19 and bought 23 life saving defibrillators for the NHS Trust.

Red Sky Ball responded to a call by Sunderland City Council for anyone who has the vital machines to lend them to local hospitals.

The North East charity has raised hundreds of thousands of pounds since it’s launch in 2016 by Sunderland couple, Sergio and Emma Petrucci, who wanted to give something back to the Children’s Heart Unit Fund at Newcastle’s Freeman Hospital where their daughter Luna was treated.

Sunderland City Council put a call out to sports clubs and centres which have their own machines to lend them to South Tyneside and Sunderland NHS Foundation Trust during the pandemic – defibrillators can be the difference between life and death if someone goes into cardiac arrest.

Due to the request, Red Sky Ball has bought 23 defibrillators, costing more than £20,000. They will be loaned to the NHS trust and handed back and then distributed to high-streets across the region once the pandemic is over.

Sergio Petrucci, founder of Red Sky Ball, said: “After hearing about the heartfelt plea in preparation for the times ahead, I felt it was appropriate that some of the funds raised from ticket sales for our recently postponed gala dinner could be best used to help our local NHS by purchasing the life-saving cardio equipment.

“Our objectives are to fund and support babies, children and now adults needing cardio care across the region. It is only right and correct that these essential medical kits are on their way to the hospitals across the Sunderland and South Tyneside NHS Trust to help in the battle against Covid-19.

“We couldn’t have done any of this without the support of our corporate partners and guests and while we have understandably had to postpone this year’s sold out event, we will be back to celebrate once the current crisis is over.”

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