THE heartbroken family of footballer Karl Carson have joined a charity crusade to bring a children’s bereavement support service to South Tyneside.
Laura Nisbet has joined four other families – known as the Cruse Crew – who are trying to raise £30,000 in the next 12 months to help charity Cruse Bereavement Care Tyneside.
The money will be used to bring the its children’s and young people’s bereavement support service to the borough.
Currently, families have to travel to the charity’s base, in High Heaton, Newcastle, to use the service.
Miss Nisbet, mum to Karl’s two children Leah, five, and Oliver, four, and mum to Gabriella, one, said: “None of us know what is around the corner. I didn’t think for one minute I’d be sitting here, now having to face a future without Karl and his children without their father.
“What the families are doing, raising this money to bring the bereavement support service to South Tyneside is amazing, and when I heard about it, I just wanted to join them and do my bit to help them in memory of Karl.
“I went to see my doctor and asked if there was anywhere I could take my children to receive support and he couldn’t tell me of anywhere. He said something about putting in a referral, but three weeks on I am still waiting so I’m not sure where the referral has gone.
“Having a children’s bereavement support service here in South Tyneside is so important, and the more people we have helping, the more money we can raise for such a worthwhile cause.”
The Cruse Crew – made up of Davy Carr, Jean Costello, Emma Robertson, Alfie Leggett and Susan Clarkson – was launched last week.
The group came together after both Mr Carr, from Cedar Drive, Jarrow, and Mrs Robertson, from Fuschia Gardens, Hebburn, struggled to find support for their young children after the death of Mr Carr’s wife Joanne, aged 41, and Mrs Robertson’s husband Gary, aged 39.
Both families were eventually signposted to Cruse for support.
Now, together with Ms Costello, from Auckland Avenue, South Shields, whose son Stephen died in 2007, aged 22, and Alfie Leggett and Susan Clarkson, from Primrose Avenue, South Shields, whose nine-year-old son Jack died in December, they are hoping to raise the cash needed to bring the service to the borough.
The families are being supported by Cruse Crew members, former Mayor and Mayoress Coun Ernest Gibson and Patricia Ridley, friends Mandy and Paul Kirton, Rachel Little, Alana Vickers and Shields Gazette staff Joyce Auty and Lisa Nightingale.
The campaign is also being backed by the Shields Gazette, Hedworth Hall and OTTO restaurant, Asda and borough-based CE Sports.