A BUDDING artist is donating £4,000 to Little Havens Hospice after winning a charity competition held by her dad’s workplace.

Five-year-old Ava Clark, from South Woodham Ferrers, took part in an art competition organised by Tokio Marine Kiln – a London-based international insurance company – where her dad works.

She won her age group category and could pick a charity of her own choice.

Families of the staff members were encouraged to send in artwork which they had made during lockdown.

Ava sent in her creation of a dragon that breathes out hearts.

She chose Little Havens to donate the money to after remembering one of the its fundraisers coming into her school to speak about the charity’s care.

Dad David said, “Ava was inspired to create a Rainbow Dragon that breathes out hearts because she wanted to spread some love during this lockdown period.

"She wanted her dragon to 'fight' diseases by breathing hearts at poorly people.

“When she was asked to choose a charity, she said Little Havens without hesitation.

"Last year the school she attends – Heathcote School – had nominated Little Havens as their charity of the year and Ava remembered the representative from the charity who visited their assembly and spoke about the fairy garden at Little Havens and all the other wonderful facilities for the children at the hospice.”

Havens Hospices spokesman Jane Hopkins said: “We are incredibly grateful to Ava for thinking of Little Havens.

"It was lovely to hear that Ava remembered the charity after we paid her school a visit to speak about the care we provide and of course, our amazing fairy garden in the grounds of the hospice.

"We would also like to thank Tokio Marine Kiln which made the donation possible.

“It is so heart-warming to know that our local community continues to support us during these difficult times, where our income has taken a major hit due to the pandemic.

“This donation will help us continue making every day count for the children and families we care for and we hope Ava will be able to come and visit Little Havens when it is safe to do so, to see how her gift has helped our patients and their families.”