A young Sheffield entrepreneur whose business was inspired by the ‘hug in a box’ gift she received while suffering from Lyme Disease is now ‘parcelling up the love’ for young patients at Bluebell Wood Children’s Hospice.
Kind-hearted Faye Savory’s gift hamper delivery business BearHugs has sold 22,000 across the globe since launching in 2015.
At its heart is the same sentiment of kindness which so moved her when a friend sent her a box of gifts through the post.
Faye, 29, said: “Lyme Disease had badly affected my life, I had to give up my job and was bed-bound.
“A delivery of little treats arrived and made me feel less alone.
“I decided that as soon as I was well enough, I would enable other people do what my friend did for me – send a great big hug through the post.”
From the beginning Faye ensured the business had a social purpose too.
“For every 50 boxes sold, Faye gives one to charity – and Bluebell Wood Children’s Hospice at North Anston is the latest organisation to benefit from BearHugs’ caring ethos
Some 60 boxes have now been given to children and their families.
Faye continued: “We already supported three charities and were looking for one in Sheffield to give to
“Several people in my team mentioned Bluebell Wood, so I arranged to visit.
“I was so surprised by how uplifting it felt there. I’m delighted we are supporting the hospice.”
Faye contracted Lyme Disease in 2010 and had to give up her role as a speech and language therapist and return to Sheffield.
Initially doctors thought she had ME and it was many months before she got a correct diagnosis and treatment.
Emma Doughty, head of family support and wellbeing at Bluebell Wood commented: “We are so grateful to BearHugs.
“We have been receiving ten boxes a month and families and staff nominate deserving recipients for a ‘hug in a box’.
“We are gifting them to family members as well as children and so far, BearHugs have thoughtfully tailored boxes for grandparents, mums and dads.”
Tony Critchley, from Doncaster, whose son Kian, 12, visits Bluebell Wood for respite care, said: “Kian absolutely loved opening his BearHugs parcel, his face was an absolute picture.”
Jemma Kibble, of Rossington, was also nominated for a ‘hug in a box’ by her husband Karl.
Their six-year-old son Olly is a patient and Jemma said: “I was overwhelmed by the nomination, it made me feel very special and appreciated.”