Layla Mae Cotter, whose parents founded the charity Layla's Trust following her death. Picture courtesy of Emma Perry
A COUPLE who lost their baby girl to a rare condition have founded a new children’s charity to support other families in their darkest hour.
Little Layla Mae Cotter was only 70 days old when she died from Gaucher Disease Type 2 in February last year.
Now her parents, Emma Perry and Colman Cotter, from Cowes, have set up Layla’s Trust with the long-term goal of providing a holiday retreat on the Isle of Wight for families with terminally ill or disabled children who require specialist accommodation, or respite care.
Emma said: "The nightmare of losing our baby was the most earth shattering pain imaginable.
"In our darkest hour we found that the love from our family, friends, nurses and even complete strangers who heard our story gave us the strength to carry on.
"The trust is about giving back some of what we received, helping similar families in their darkest hour."
The couple said they had found from their own experiences there were many other ways in which bereaved families and those with terminally ill or disabled children can be supported.
Emma explained: "Our immediate plans are to assist the children’s community team in delivering additional respite care to families who are caring for children with life limiting illnesses at home."
The new charity will mark its official launch at Quay Arts on Saturday, April 28, with a charity auction of bespoke art and vintage furniture, all of which has been donated by local artists and businesses. The auction will be conducted by Warren Riches of Shanklin Auction Rooms.
For more on this story please see the Isle of Wight County Press on Friday, April 13.
Colman Cotter and Emma Perry