Family vow to fight for better support as they pay tribute to 'talented' mum after her death at 35

The family of a Sunderland mum who has died aged 35 have spoke of her talent as they vowed to call for more support for women in need.

Monday, 17th August 2020, 5:05 pm

Tina Robson, from Penshaw, died in July, leaving her 11-year-old son Vinnie heartbroken.

The mum, who had been living in Stockton, had battled with addiction and mental health issues.

Tina’s mum, Sue Robson, 60, a community development worker, said she never stopped fighting for the right support for her daughter.

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Tina Robson, pictured with her son Vinnie, now 11, after he was born.

She said: “My beloved daughter Tina struggled with mental health and associated addictions from a young age.

"Never wanting to give up hope of her recovery, I struggled constantly for over 20 years to find the right kind of support.

"In reality what I found time and time again was that, effective services for women affected by trauma and addictions simply don’t exist.

"Instead, women’s addiction and recovery services are simply appended onto a model that is designed around the needs of men.

Tina Robson with her beloved son Vinnie, in recent times and when he was born.

"My love for her will live on in her precious son, and in my lifelong passion as part of a movement to make the case for dedicated women-only services, so that others may not have to experience such a tragic loss of life.”

Vinnie lives with Sue through a guardianship arrangement, and son and mum continued to share a special bond and regular contact.

Sue, who sits on the advisory panel of charity Family Rights Group, has helped other families in similar situations through the Sunderland Carers’ Centre and worked to set up the city's More than Grandparents group.

Sue has said since Tina’s death, Vinnie and their family have been surrounded by “wonderful support from friends, particularly those from our wide national network of kinship carers and children.”

The view from the location where a bench could be installed in memory of Tina Robson.

More than £1,000 has also be raised in Tina’s memory for The Open Nest, a charity which supports children and families affected by the trauma of severance.

Vinnie is working to create a sculpture as a lasting memorial to his mum and the family also hope to install a memorial bench in Allonby, Cumbria where they holidayed before her sudden death.

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Mourners at Tina’s funeral, led by family friend Eileen Osbourne and organised by Carol and John Finn Funeral Directors, were told she was “a beautiful, talented and unique individual who lived her life to the full.”

A tribute from her grandmother Joyce Haines, 96, read: "I loved her as I love all my grandchildren but Tina had something special.

"She was also quite clever, so wasted in this life.

"I pray she has found peace and a better world.”

Another was sent from sister Jamie, who lives in Spain, and spoke the “unbreakable bond” between them and their two other sisters, as well as Tina’s skill as an artist.

She said: “Her creativity was limitless. She was talented beyond measurement and the way in which she could turn nothing into something was marvellously special.”

An inquest has yet to be held as inquiries continue into her death.

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