The Chelsea Hutchison Foundation

The Chelsea Hutchison Foundation is a wonderful US based charity that was setup by the family of Chelsea Hutchison 10 years ago after her sudden passing from SUDEP when she was 16 years old. Her family explain what made Chelsea so incredibly special and how she has touched so many lives –

“Chelsea was born September 28, 1992 and brought more joy into our lives than we can express in words. At the age of 11, she began having occasional seizures, until one night, April 19, 2009, at the age of 16, Chelsea died very unexpectedly after having a seizure in her sleep. The Chelsea Hutchison Foundation was created in loving memory of our precious daughter, sister, niece, cousin and friend, Chelsea Alice Hutchison. No one had ever told us a seizure could take her life. The term, SUDEP (Sudden Unexpected Death in Epilepsy) is a term we would learn to know well.

Chelsea loved life! She lived every day to the fullest and never ceased to amaze us with her creativity and imagination. From believing she was a baby fox or a mama kitty as a young girl, to pretending to be a mermaid lying helplessly on the floor inside her bedroom (you know, Mermaids can’t walk); there was never a dull moment.Chelsea had a pink alien friend named “Sweetie” who went on many wonderful adventures with her. To most, Sweetie looked like a simple pink baby blanket. “Britany” was her special teddy bear friend who had her own passport and traveled everywhere with her.

The stories she would write and the pictures she would draw amazed us. They came from inside Chelsea’s school notebooks, which were color-coordinated and uniquely decorated; complete with a Disney Princess folder inside each one. She took on most school assignments with great enthusiasm. There was no such thing as a simple book report. Instead, they were projects that typically involved a trip to a store for special art supplies to make them just so.

She never wanted to be limited to just one group of friends; she genuinely wanted to be friends with EVERYONE!

She loved who she was and even loved her name! It was important for her to be her own person and often referred to herself as a “dork” with pride!

Chelsea was as beautiful on the inside as she was on the outside.

Chelsea touched many lives “

The charity is run by Chelsea’s parents Julie and Doug and Chelsea’s brother Brady is the charity treasurer. The family have fought through their own personal tradigy, to help safeguard and educate thousands of US families, to try and prevent others from going through the same loss and heartache as them.

The Chelsea Hutchison Foundation is designed to assist people living with Epilepsy. In their 10th year they have provided 119 grants for seizure-response dogs, 750 grants for epilepsy monitors and 66 grants for wish trips to the Disney Expo in California.

As well providing grants they also educate the public about SUDEP, and provide support to those who have been affected by SUDEP through the Chelsea Hutchison Community. (Click here to watch a short video about the work they have carried out this year and some of the events they have held https://www.facebook.com/thechelseahutchisonfoundation/videos/459335298102236/)

Their tireless work has helped thousands of families and hasnt gone unnoticed as they have been awarded “2019 Top Rated Non Profit”

In 2019 PulseGuard started working alongside The Chelsea Hutchison Foundation to help US families who desperately needed a PulseGuard monitor, but were unable to afford the cost themselves. We found that after the lauch of the Mark II, we had so many families contacting us about available funding for them, but being based in the UK we found many obstacles that we were unable to overcome without the help of overseas Charities.

Kate reached out to Julie at The Chelsea Hutchison Foundation and was so grateful when she agreed to help assist families in need of a PulseGuard. Every month Julie will refer families over to Kate and if they meet the criteria for a PulseGuard, Kate will refer them back to Julie for funding.

It has been an absolute privilidge getting to know Julie over the past year and hearing about the amazing ongoing work they do to assist as many families as they can.

I look forward to 2020 and continuing to support more families through The Chelsea Hutchison Foundation.

If you have been helped by The Chelsea Hutchison Foundation and would like to give back to them to assist another family in the New Year, or you have been touched by their work and would like to help them continue to help many more, please click on the link to go to their website donation page https://chelseahutchisonfoundation.org/donate/

Or give them a follow on facebook https://www.facebook.com/thechelseahutchisonfoundation/?ref=br_rs

Author Info

Kate Farmer

Senior Clinical Advisor for PulseGuard International Ltd. I have 15 years experience working frontline A&E in the UK NHS Ambulance Service. I have gone on to train and research extensively around epilepsy, to provide the most up to date information, clinical advice and support to PulseGuard customers and followers as well as living first hand with the personal effects of Dravet Syndrome within my family

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