Tottenham Hotspur Legends are to play Brackley Town FC next month to raise money for a charity helping families with sick newborn babies

A team from the Tottenham Hotspur Legends will visit Brackley Town FC for a charity foorball match to raise money for SSNAP - Supporting the Sick Newborn and Parents.

Monday, 23rd August 2021, 4:16 pm
Updated Monday, 23rd August 2021, 4:18 pm
Dad James Kite with Emma and baby Jacob

The event on on Sunday, September 5 has been organised by James and Emma Kite of Banbury who lost one of their twin boys in a 24-week birth in October, 2019 and were given crucial support by the charity.

Among the players expected at the fundraising match include Mark Falco, Tony Galvin, Gary Doherty, Ramon Vega and David Howells. Final teams cannot be guaranteed but Tottenham will be sending its strongest Legends team to make it a hugely exciting game.

Mr and Mrs Kite were admitted to the delivery suite at the JR Hospital, Oxford on October 21 and a large medical team was assigned to the birth.

Tottenham Hotspur Legends are to come to Brackley on a charity mission

Sadly, tiny Charlie James was stillborn, having passed away in the latter stages of Mrs Kite's 12-hour labour. However twin Jacob Oliver survived, weighing in at a tiny 1lb 9oz - less than a bag of sugar. Jacob spent the next 94 days in the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU) before being allowed home with oxygen support.

SSNAP then came into their own, taking over necessary practical arrangements and doing everything they could to help the boys' parents in the grieving process as they said their last goodbyes to baby Charlie.

Dad James Kite, a call centre manager at Banbury Cross Health Centre, said: "SSNAP provided us comfort from the first morning when we as a family were in Intensive Care. They supported us during extremely difficult times from providing us breakfast so we didn't have to leave Jacob to organising overnight accommodation to limit the hours we spent away.

"The more time we spent in Intensive Care the more we realised how much SSNAP supports the whole Neonatal Ward. SSNAP helped fund the majority of the equipment on the ward including the ventilator which helped Jacob during some difficult times. They also funded extra training for the nurses - including bereavement counselling for parents which we definitely benefitted from," he said.

Baby Jacob Kite was allowed home following 94 days in the intensive care unit at the JR

"We will forever feel in debt to SSNAP and all the staff in NICU at the John Radcliffe Hospital. We want to raise awareness of SSNAP to highlight the positive impact they have on families during difficult times and help raise donations to support families who may have to go through a similar experience."

The couple has already raised £2100 in memory of Charlie. The money will be put towards a new Bereavement Suite on the JR's Neonatal ward. (https://www.justgiving.com/fundraising/charliekite)

The charity football match is a bid to raise further funds for the charity's valuable work. Tickets for the event can be bought at https://www.tickettailor.com/events/tottenhamlegends

Jacob Kite is growing into a strong and healthy little boy after a difficult start in life