ECHO - Connecting the Children's Heart Community

How we spend the money we raise

We receive no government or NHS funding and rely solely on public generosity to ensure that we continue to support and empower children, young people and families affected by heart disease.

Where your money goes

Every year we spend between £200-250,000 delivering the following core services to support our members:

ECHO Today

Initially set up in 1984 to help children with heart conditions and their families, ECHO now helps people across a greater age range with specific support and information. We support young people aged 11-18 through ECHO Teens, families experiencing exceptional difficulties through our cardiac support service, bereaved families; as well as heart children, their siblings, parents/carers and the wider family in need of support.

This year we’ve worked hard to review the core functions of our charity and made sure that everything we do has member’s needs at the heart.

Some of our achievements this year:

Reviewed and updated our brand:

Why? During our review process it became clear that as an organisation ECHO needed to improve the way we tell the ECHO story, to encourage more families to join our organisation and receive support.

Our decision to re-brand has not been about changing ECHO. It has instead focused on what ECHO truly is. ECHO connects the Children’s Heart Community by bringing together children and young people with heart conditions, their families and medical professionals. It is a community of shared experience and understanding.

Delivered a new ECHO website:

Why? Our previous website was out-of-date and did not give a true representation of the many ways we support heart families in 2017. We now have a much improved website, providing a wide range of better, clearer information and guidance to families of children with heart conditions.

Rebranded ECHO Teens:

Why? In addition to revitalising the ECHO brand we have also delivered an exciting new brand for young people, an evolution of ECHO Teen Club. ECHO Teens reflects its position as an independent, vibrant space for young people with heart conditions, whilst remaining an important part of the wider ECHO community.

Introduced bereavement grants:

ECHO has established a bereavement grant to help parents and carers with the cost of either travelling to and from the hospital after the loss of their child, or towards the cost of a funeral and memorial.

Secured office space:

In 2017 ECHO is proud to open its first office, opposite the Evelina London Children’s Hospital. As well as acting as the charity’s head office the new space offers up:

Provided lots of events giving families the chance to connect:

Why? These events help to reduce isolation, improve local support networks and enable families to meet others experiencing a similar situation. Treatment and care can feel very different when families leave the specialist surgical centre and need help locally. Families gain support from talking to and connecting with people who have experienced a similar journey to them.

Parents frequently tell us how much they value ECHO events and consider them a key part of the service we provide to support heart families, which is why we ensure they continue to happen.

Been selected as Charity of the Year by two organisations:

ECHO has been fortunate to be selected as Charity of the Year by Whitehead Monckton and the Athena Network City & Essex.

The value of their input cannot be underestimated. Not only have they repeatedly helped us to raise much needed funds, but they’ve also provided us with their skills and knowledge, as well as volunteers for a variety of different situations.