Chicane Internet, the Suffolk-based company providing businesses with reliable and user friendly VOIP telephone systems, has donated £5,000 to The Somerville Foundation, a charity that supports those affected by congenital heart defects.

Congenital heart defects (CHD) are the most common birth defects in the world. In the UK alone, almost one in a hundred babies are born every year with serious heart problems. The donation made by Chicane will support the free confidential helpline, the facilitation of peer support networks and ‘meet-ups’, to reduce patient isolation and build supportive relationships. The foundation looks after both the physical and the emotional wellbeing of people with CHD, as well as supporting their families and loved ones.

Nicola Graves, Development Director at The Somerville Foundation, said: “We are incredibly grateful to Chicane for the donation of £5,000.  As a charity we rely on donations from businesses and individuals to carry out vital work to improve the lives of people living with congenital heart defects.


“Our goal is to understand and support those with CHD; their health, their quality of life, mental health and how it affects those around them.  It is also important to raise awareness of the disorder, with over 250,000 adults living with heart defects in the UK, many lives are disrupted by the condition.”

Robert Kemp, Chairman of Chicane Internet added; “We are thrilled to be supporting such a great cause. In 2018, I was fitted with a pacemaker after living with an undiagnosed heart condition for many years.  Once the pacemaker was fitted, I realised how much I had been struggling.  I know that I am one of the lucky ones, but many are not.  I hope our donation will assist the charity in its objective of creating a greater mental health platform for the patients and families living with congenital heart disease.

Renowned British Athlete, Roger Black MBE, who was born with a congenital heart defect, spoke about the importance of supporting the mental health of those with the condition: “The physical symptoms can be challenging, but so is the feeling that you are living on borrowed time. It can be a daily battle for those who’ve been diagnosed to maintain their physical and mental health. My body didn’t feel like mine, I had been invaded – I had been shattered. I was lucky enough to speak to someone who reassured me that she felt how I do…talking is definitely a healer and the mind is a very powerful thing.”

The Somerville Foundation is hosting its annual conference on October 5th 2019. The event will be held at the Crown Plaza in Liverpool, with guest speakers including Jane Somerville, the founder of the Foundation.  If you would like to attend, you can register your interest here:

The Somerville Foundation Annual Conference 

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