A Radlett mother who set up a charity to help Watford General Hospital's special care baby unit has paid tribute to her fellow fundraisers.
Rebekah Habib had little time to grieve when her husband Gulam passed away; four months after his death, a problem with her umbilical cord meant she gave birth to her daughter Sorayah by emergency Caesarean section.
The problem was discovered at a normally routine 20-week scan, and Mrs Habib was immediately taken to intensive care at Watford General Hospital.
Doctors suggested the stress of losing her husband - whom she had met at the age of 14 - to a blood disorder the day before could have brought on the problem.
Thanks to all of the support she received from Watford General Hospital, Mrs Habib decided to set up organisation HertsPrems to raise cash for the hospital.
The 27-year-old said: "When my husband died while I was 20 weeks pregnant, I soon discovered that my baby was having trouble growing.
"My consultant at Watford said they were going to monitor me closely and when the time was right, I would be taken in for an emergency Caesarean section. This came sooner than expected at 36 weeks and my daughter only weighed three pounds and five ounces, which was extremely small.
"Because of this she had to stay at the special care baby unit at Watford General Hospital for four weeks. They were fantastic and offered me a lot of support through a very hard and emotional time. "My daughter is now doing very well.
"I joined forces with other mothers to create HertsPrems in July, helping other parents cope with having a premature baby."
Through fundraisers including a dinner and dance in November and a Christmas fete in December, the group has raised more £9,000, as well as £1,000 in Gift Aid.
Mrs Habib added: "We would like to thank everyone for everything they have done to help us raise money for a truly worthy cause from baking cakes to donating old toys and amazing raffle prizes to donating cash.
"It's because of you we have become so successful with our fundraising."
To find out about their next event visit www.justgiving.com/teams/hertsprems