Cruse Crew’s £30,000 fundraising story described as ‘inspirational’ at national conference.

A fundraising group who brought a children and young people’s bereavement support service to South Tyneside have shared their experiences with people across the country.

The Cruse Crew – made up of bereaved families and their friends – was launched last year to raise £30,000.

To have our group described as inspirational - you can’t describe the feeling.

Jean Costello

The money was to enable charity Cruse Bereavement Care Tyneside to bring its children and young people’s bereavement support service to South Tyneside.

Within the six months the cash was raised and, in April, the group, along with representatives from the charity, officially launched the service, now based at Cleadon Park PCT in South Shields.

Their fundraising project was picked up nationally by Cruse Bereavement Care and the group – created after parents Davy Carr and Emma Robertson struggled to find help in the borough for their young children following the death of their respective partners – were asked to attend the charity’s annual conference in Coventry.

Cruse Crew members Lisa Nightingale and Jean Costello travelled to the two-day event held at the University of Warwick, where they staged workshops for volunteers from across the country re-living the Cruse Crew fundraising story.

Jean, whose son Stephen died on Boxing Day 2007, said: “Words can’t describe how immensely proud we both felt to be able to talk about the achievements of the Cruse Crew and to also have the opportunity to praise those who supported us, to people from across the country.

“To have our group described as ‘inspirational’ by complete strangers and to receive the positive feedback we did, you just can’t express how that made you feel.”

The Cruse Crew members also include: Emma Robertson, Laura Nisbet, Alfie Leggett, Susan Clarkson, Davy Carr, Graham Muirhead, Rachel Little, Alana Vickers, Paul and Mandy Kirton, Joyce Auty and Alison Brown, Coun Ernest Gibson and Patricia Ridley.

Cruse Bereavement Care Tyneside provides bereavement support to adults, children and young people in South Tyneside and surrounding areas.

To contact Cruse Bereavement Care Tyneside, call 0191 276 5533.