Continuing our support in N. Ireland
After 13 years working for the Charity in Northern Ireland, Sharon Davidson has decided to move on in a different career direction. Sharon has really enjoyed working for the Charity and will miss the committed staff, whom she describes as caring, supportive and really focussed on the needs of those suffering from infertility and the many friends she made during this time.
Having moved from a volunteer for 4 years to a staff member, Sharon would encourage everyone reading this to consider volunteering for the charity. In N. Ireland, help is needed to run the evening support groups and to campaign for positive changes to NHS fertility treatment. Campaigning does work, albeit slowly, as when Sharon joined as a volunteer there was no NHS IVF treatment. However, as a campaigner Sharon made her voice heard time and time again until one NHS IVF treatment cycle then one fresh and one frozen treatment cycle were introduced. Again the Charity were listened to when couples had to endure the pain of walking through the maternity hospital entrance to reach the Regional Fertility Centre (RFC). A new “RFC” entrance was introduced making the initial visit to the NHS fertility clinic a lot less emotive. Sharon says she is one of the lucky ones to have two wonderful children, one after 6 attempts of fertility treatment and one through overseas adoption. Sharon shared her journey with so many over the years, describing it as a very stressful and life changing route to parenthood which made her much more resilient.
Sharon would advice others still trying to use the services of the charity, both local and through our Head Office team, to consider attending for counselling, to try to keep positive and de-stress and most importantly to keep talking to each other and others in the same situation. For N. Ireland the campaigning challenges continue and thanks to the help of some great volunteers, the recent decision to postpone the NHS IVF service in N. Ireland for a period of 5 months has been reversed. Meanwhile, a new N. Ireland Coordinator is in the process of being recruited and this staff member along with a Support Coordinator will continue to provide much needed practical and emotional support and understanding to the one in six couples in N. Ireland who need us! Sharon says a heartfelt good bye and wishes everyone luck with their future fertility journey.