Burpee challenge raises £17k for new life-saving equipment at St George’s
St George’s has received new equipment for fetal surgery thanks to St George’s Hospital Charity and fundraiser Craig Peters, also known as ‘The Burpee Guy’!
In 2016, Craig set himself the challenge of completing over 67,000 burpees to help raise money for our Fetal Medicine Unit, after they saved the lives of his twin sons in 2014.
After completing his challenge, Craig went on to perform 6,500 burpees in 24 hours and a further 45,000 in 2017. In total, Craig has raised an incredible £17,000 by doing burpees!
This money has helped to purchase a new Fetal Endoscopic Set – equipment used in surgery to treat twin-to-twin transfusion syndrome (TTTS). Craig’s wife, Kyrie, was 20 weeks pregnant with identical twins when she was diagnosed with the condition.
TTTS condition affects 10% of multiple pregnancies and occurs when there is an uneven flow of blood in the vessels connecting the twins. One twin receives too much blood, putting a strain on their heart, while the other receives too little which can affect their growth and survival.
Kyrie was advised to go undergo emergency laser surgery. Without treatment, there was a 90% chance they would lose both babies. During the procedure, a laser beam is inserted through a small incision in the mother’s abdominal wall and uterus. The laser seals of blood vessels in the shared placenta so that both babies receive a more equal supply of blood.
After treatment, there was a one in three chance that both twins would survive; a one in three chance that only one would make it; and a one in three chance they could lose both.
Amerjit Chohan, CEO of St George’s Hospital Charity said: “We are thrilled that Craig decided to give back and support St George’s after his experience here. It is amazing to see the money Craig fundraised so hard for, supporting more patients like himself and his family.”
With the purchase of the Fetal Endoscopic Set, the team can now undertake a wider range of surgery and multiple operations in a week. Craig’s donation is made even more exciting by the fact St George’s has recently been recognised as one of only four fetal surgery centres in the country, as a result of the new equipment.
Craig said: “To have now been told that the piece of equipment I fundraised for is not only operational but is in fact improving clinical outcomes in TTTS, that’s news that I don’t think will ever sink in. It makes every single piece of blood, sweat and tears completely worth it.
“We appreciate we are one of the lucky ones but there’s families out there experiencing the roller-coaster ride of TTTS, sometimes with very tragic consequences. I always set out to do what I can to give something back to the people who gave us our boys, though I never imagined I’d raise enough money to purchase another actual piece of equipment. I’m absolutely overjoyed to know it is saving lives.”
Craig has now pledged to continue fundraising for St George’s Hospital Charity and is attempting to break the Guinness World Record for the most burpees completed within 24 hours.
St George’s Hospital Charity supports St George’s and Queen Mary’s hospitals and the communities they serve. The charity gives grants and raises funds to improve facilities, provide equipment, enable research and arts activities, and support staff.
To find out more about St George’s Hospital Charity visit: https://www.stgeorgeshospitalcharity.org.uk/