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SOFT UK Annual Awards Winners

This year we received many nominations for our Annual Awards scheme. The SOFT UK Annual Awards recognise the efforts of professionals working with families affected by Trisomy. The nominations sent to us were heartfelt thanks from families and as always, its very hard to choose between them. However, we are delighted to announce that the winners of this year’s award have been chosen.

This award recognises healthcare professionals leading the way in providing excellence in care for our Trisomy families.

Our winners for 2019 are Corrine Dacosta-Henry and Fran Wooton from the Neonatal Unit at Birmingham City Hospital. They were nominated by Karon Evans after they cared for her daughter Katie-Ann who had Trisomy 18 and Dandy Walker Syndrome.


Karon said “They both went above and beyond their duty of care to give Katie and our family special moments we will hold in our hearts forever. Corinne stood by us as a family through some tough times and always went above and beyond. I really can’t thank her enough. Fran was amazing, she arranged a little picnic in the grounds of the hospital for us to gain some memories with Katie. It’s a memory I will never forget as she tried to make it as if we were just having a family hour to ourselves as a normal life; it was amazing. She pushed for Katie to finally come home to try and let us all live some kind of normal life for as long as Katie-Ann had left to live. Without both of them i know things would have been a totally different outcome through our journey.”

The judging panel were particularly impressed by these efforts given how busy neonatal units are and the holistic treatment of the family in a clinical setting.



This award recognises individuals who have gone above and beyond to support our Trisomy families through bereavement.

Our winner for 2019 is Lesley Carline, Bereavement Specialist Midwife at Peterborough City Hospital. Lesley was nominated by Vicky Hollis, after she cared for them when they lost their daughter Millie, who had Trisomy 18.

Vicky said “We went into hospital to deliver Millie and that was the first time we met Lesley. Within minutes we felt as though we had known her for years. You instantly realise that she is the most compassionate and empathetic person you will probably ever meet, and to do her job takes an incredibly special person. That day was the hardest day of our lives, but she took the most amazing care of us, and when we thought she couldn’t do any better, she did. The past month since having Millie continues to be a very hard journey, but Lesley continues to support us. She follows up with me on a regular basis, by phone, text, email and in person. She seems to have this magic knack of knowing when I need her and just pops up to check in. She always remembers you and important details. She knows that Millie will always be a part of our family and always refers to myself, my partner, our eldest daughter Harper and our angel Millie as a family of four. She has a wealth of knowledge of all things in this area and is always on hand to help. She 100% understands the nightmare that we are going through.”


Lesley’s nomination shows just how important this specialist role is in maternity services. Excellent care in bereavement continues long after the families leave hospital.


We have a difficult decision every year picking winners from the nominations we receive. While we can only have one winner in each category, we feel it is important to acknowledge the examples of excellent practise we receive in our nominations.

We would like to offer our thanks, on behalf of the whole SOFT UK community to the following professionals, for their dedication and compassion in supporting families affected by Trisomy:

Rachel Johnston and Jean Holden, Derian’s House Children’s Hospice, Chorley.
Abbie Alcock, Children’s Community Palliative Care Nurse, Landsdowne Health Centre, West Midlands
Julie Kelly, Health Visitor, Black Country Partnership Foundation Trust.

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