Worthing yoga teacher launches monthly charity class to thank Children’s Liver Disease Foundation for its support after her son was born with a rare disease

A Worthing yoga teacher has launched a monthly charity class to raise money for Children’s Liver Disease Foundation as a thank you for the help she received when her little boy was born with a rare disease.

Josie Sovegjarto found her yoga was essential after the birth of Rudy six months ago, helping to keep her calm as she and her husband Joe Philip coped with their son's traumatic start to life.

She enjoys guiding others in mindful techniques and will now raise money for charity at the same time, with 50 per cent of the proceeds of her new monthly class going directly to CLDF.

Josie said: "We had a really traumatic introduction to parenthood and a heartbreaking first few months. The strain on parents of discovering that your newborn baby is sick and then sleeping, feeding and living bedside in hospital with so much uncertainty is enormous.

Josie Sovegjarto found her yoga and meditation techniques were a huge help in getting her through a difficult time

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"My husband and I are taking extra care of ourselves physically, emotionally and mentally as much as we can, as we process all that has happened.

"I am hugely grateful for my yoga, meditation and mindfulness practice and the experience I have in guiding others with these techniques. This was essential in the first few months of Rudy's life to remain calm and gain some perspective on bad days; to know the importance of slowing down, breathing mindfully and accepting all that is going on. Yoga is brilliant for stress relief and relaxation.

"I am hoping in the future to find a way to help support other parents going through similar situations with my experience in yoga, movement and meditation teachings. But for now I am eager to raise some funds for CLDF as a thank you for the guidance, support and information we were provided with whilst Rudy was in hospital."

Josie Sovegjarto with her son Rudy, who is now doing well after treatment for a rare liver disease

Rudy needed an operation on his bowel the day he was born and spent a month in intensive care at the Trevor Mann Baby Unit in Brighton. When doctors began to suspect he may also have a serious problem with his liver, the family was transferred as an emergency to the specialist children’s liver unit at King's College Hospital in London.

It was later confirmed Rudy had the rare liver disease, biliary atresia. Further surgery took place and Rudy is now thriving.

Josie said: "Rudy’s treatment at King's was exceptional. In addition to the medical care, staff there told us about how CLDF could help us and we found all their information, both in the leaflets and on the website, to be essential to us in keeping us away from Google and instead having reliable and reassuring resources. It’s wonderful to know that this support is there for families in our situation."

Josie hopes people will also discover huge benefits from yoga while knowing they are supporting the charity.Katherine Myles, interim chief executive of Children’s Liver Disease Foundation, said: "CLDF is the only UK charity dedicated to fighting all childhood liver diseases, by providing information and emotional support, funds for research and a voice for all those affected."We’re delighted that Josie found our information so valuable at such a difficult time and delighted to hear of her fundraising plans. We are a small charity, reliant on voluntary donations, so her classes are really going to help make a difference to families throughout the UK who are affected by liver disease in their children.”

To find out more about Josie’s monthly class, go to baseflowyoga.com.