A FUNDRAISING campaign has been launched to give a courageous 26-year-old mum – being kept alive by a machine – treasured moments with her three young children.
Friends and family are rallying round to help create the precious memories for Nicole Thompson, who is battling severe heart failure, and her beloved youngsters.
Nicole received the devastating news that her heart was failing shortly after giving birth to baby daughter Ebonie last summer.
She underwent surgery and was fitted with an LVAD, which helps pump blood.
The machine is intended as a stop-gap until a heart transplant can be performed.
But high levels of antibodies in her blood mean there is currently no prospect of a transplant taking place.
"We were devastated at the news but we have to remain positive," said Nicole's mum, Angie Chippendale, from Long Lee.
"I'm living in hope and we certainly won't give up.
"Fortunately we have got a good family and support network.
"People have been fantastic – they've really come together."
Miss Chippendale is juggling her job as a dispenser in a pharmacy with visiting Nicole, who is at Calderdale Royal Hospital, and other family duties – including helping to look after Ebonie, now nine months, and Nicole's other children Archie, eight, and Layla, five.
"We're all doing what we can but it is hard," she said.
"Nicole's immune system is extremely weak so she picks up infections very easily and has spent a lot of time in hospital.
"She was poorly throughout her pregnancy with Ebonie, but nothing was detected.
"After giving birth she was excessively tired and low and I was really concerned. I thought she had postnatal depression.
"It wasn't until she underwent tests that the heart problem was diagnosed."
An online fundraising page has been set-up, at justgiving.com/crowdfunding/NicoleThompson, with the aim of coining-in £3,000 to pay for memorable experiences for Nicole and the children.
Over £800 has been raised so far.
And a care home, where two of Nicole's sisters work, is staging a fundraising event.
There will be a range of attractions at the extravaganza, at Homecroft Care Home in Victoria Avenue, Ilkley, on April 22, 2pm to 4pm.
An Easter egg hunt will take place in the grounds. Entry will be £2 per child, with an Easter egg for each at the end.
It is also hoped to have a fire engine present and a ducking stool or stocks, with home manager Kirsty Francis among the volunteer targets.
Inside the home there will be tea, coffee and cakes for sale, plus a tombola and raffle.
Donations of prizes are being sought.
Part of the proceeds from the event will also go to the home.