(In the above pic Ulrika is pictured with husband Brian Monet, daughters Bo and Martha and 6-month-old son Malcolm. Her oldest son Cameron, 14, is not in the photograph)
Ulrika Jonsson, 41, joined The Starlight Children’s Foundation on a trip to Lapland in search of Father Christmas.
Ulrika’s 8-year-old daughter Bo was born with a genetic heart defect which necessitated her spending many weeks in the hospital.
Ulrika said: “I was hugely touched by their (Starlight’s) mantra, as I myself am a mother of a chronically ill child. My daughter Bo was born with a genetic heart defect, and while she is an energetic eight-year old with no outward signs of her condition, I’m only too aware of the power of distraction, having spent many weeks in hospital with her.”
Starlight grants the wishes of seriously and terminally ill children in order to remove the focus from their sickness, pain and fears.
“I was hugely touched by their mantra. For me, this was an important trip for many reasons. Spending time with children who’ve suffered severe blows in their young lives is important, I believe, for my own children’s development and sense of empathy. For Bo, in particular, I felt it would be very beneficial – she would be able to see that she is not alone in having spent time in hospital and having had her own life hang in the balance. I also wanted to see first-hand how an organisation such as Starlight makes a difference to sick children’s lives. Doctors and nurses naturally spend their time fighting to make a child better, but embracing the whole family like Starlight does has got to be a huge part of a child’s spiritual health.”
As the mother of four children by four fathers Ulrika’s Christmas arrangements are complicated. Bo and Martha, 4, are spending this Christmas with their fathers.
“This trip would be our own special time of festive celebration as a family,” said Ulrika.”‘Besides, we wanted a little snow at Christmas, and we were not disappointed.”