Leah Ramsden (centre), with dad Andrew, mum Paula & sister Paige
At just nine years old, Leah Ramsden, from Arnold, Nottinghamshire (UK) is already being described as a “veteran fundraiser”. Leah, who attends Sir John Sherbrooke Junior School, has been receiving regular treatment for various conditions at the renal ward of the Queens Medical Centre, and she has been returning the favour by raising funds for them. She single-handedly organised a charity summer fair at the City Hospital‘s leisure centre, featuring craft stalls, sweet and cake stalls, a bouncy castle, a hook-a-duck stand, a raffle and a tombola, with more than 20 donated prizes, including tickets to the Savoy cinema, a car MOT and a facial therapy session. Mum Paula says Leah has become quite proficient at persuading businesses to donate prizes.
The £1,300 raised by the event will cover the full cost of a Doppler machine, to reduce pain and anxiety when kids’ blood pressure is taken. Leah, who has her blood pressure monitored every few months, says “It hurts… some of the kids on the ward find it really hard…this machine should stop that…I just want to help people.”
Leah organised a similar event last year, and raised nearly £1,000 for new TVs and DVDs on the renal ward. Along with four friends, and 6-year-old sister Paige, she also recently raised donations by helping shoppers at Asda pack their bags. She estimates that they packed over 1,000 bags between them.
Head of fundraising at Nottingham Hospitals Charity, Jenny Wing, thanked Leah for all her hard work, and described her as one of their youngest-ever fundraisers.
Christopher Grey (centre front) with some of his classmates
A 12-year-old from Bon-y-maen, who lost his dad and granddad to brain cancer, has made quite an impact locally, fundraising for Brain Tumour Research. Christopher Grey, who attends Bishop Vaughan School in Swansea, has raised hundreds of pounds collecting door-to-door, organised a school raffle and Wear A Hat day (which brought in well over £1,000), and walked from the LC leisure centre in Swansea to Verdi’s in Mumbles, dressed as the Honey Monster… accompanied by his mum dressed as a whoopee cushion. Swansea Council colleagues of his late dad Jeff (who died of a brain tumour, at the age of 54, last November) also joined in the charity walk. His mum Cath says “Christopher’s amazing …[He] walked miles just to collect sponsorship…[and] is already talking about holding different events next year.” He has now been nominated for Swansea Council’s High 5 Awards, which celebrate the achievements of young people in the local community.
Did you know that 65% of terminal patients would like to die in their own home, but that here in the UK less than 50% are currently able to?
The charity Marie Curie Cancer Care is currently working to rectify that, and to ensure that everyone can end their days where they wish, surrounded by family and friends, and cared for by trained staff. Each year the charity organises a number of high-profile events around the country, and in June last year I drew attention in this blog to an impending annual twilight 10km fundraising walk that they had arranged at Margam Park, just a few miles from my home. I said I was hoping to get along to it myself. Unfortunately, in the end I was unable to.
But this year I have made up my mind to rectify that. The event is due to take place again in just over a week’s time, on Saturday the 17th of August – two days after my birthday. I plan to complete the full 10km, through the beautiful grounds of Margam Park, and in the process to raise funds for the charity. The walk is due to be completed by 10pm… the time that most nurses’ night shifts commence: it will be followed by music, stalls, entertainment, and a firework display.
I don’t often make personal appeals, here on Generosity News – and this event (and its organisers) fall outside the usual remit of our website – but I feel obliged to make an exception on this occasion. I am hoping that as many people as possible will support my fundraising effort, and I would be really grateful if you would consider making a small contribution, through my JustGiving page. Donating this way is simple, fast and totally secure. Your details will be safe and will never be sold-on or generate unwanted emails. It’s also an efficient way to donate: your money will be forwarded directly to the charity, saving them time and cutting their costs.
So why not dig deep, right now! Every £20 donated will pay for an hour of a nurse’s time, and I’m aiming to raise a minimum of £180, to cover a complete night-shift of 9 hours. But whatever you can afford will be gratefully received and will help make a real difference.
Having just joined the charity as a part-time fundraiser, I believe it’s especially appropriate that I will be taking part in this exciting local event. And as some of you know, I am a cancer survivor myself, so this is a cause that is especially close to my heart! Don’t let me down, will you?
Sugababe’s Jade Ewen (centre) with carers Chloe (left) and Amber (right).
Photo credit: Co-op
The UK currently has an estimated half-million 14-25 year-old carers – young people caring for loved ones who are unable to cope without their support because of illness, disability, mental health or addiction issues, or general frailty. This is a rapidly growing issue, and is regarded by many as a “ticking time bomb”. It can have a serious impact on whether or not those involved are able to remain at school, pursue further education or follow chosen careers. Unpaid young adult carers face all kinds of challenges, and they desperately need support, information, advice, breaks, and a variety of other services. An organisation endeavouring to address some of these problems is the Carers Trust. Created by the merger of two organisations – Crossroads Care (set up in 1974) and The Princess Royal Trust for Carers (founded in 1991) – the Trust has the vision of “A world where the role and contribution of unpaid carers is recognised and they have access to the quality support and services they need to live their own lives”.
This year, as part of its “Inspiring Young People” campaign, the Co-operative selected the Carers Trust as its Charity of the Year, and it has just reached the halfway point of £2.5m raised towards its £5m target. To mark this milestone, Sugababe singer Jade Ewen (herself a carer) spent time with young adult carers in Manchester last week.
Co-op staff’s fundraising activities have included charity balls, a giant picnic, coffee mornings, abseiling down Manchester’s CIS Tower, cycling from Lands End to John O’Groats, and a ‘three peaks’ challenge. They are seeking to fund programmes that will raise awareness and understanding, break down barriers and reduce feelings of isolation, provide emotional support, provide coping mechanisms, and encourage legislative change. Thea Stein, chief executive of Carers Trust, says that “the money raised is already making a difference”.
Here at the Chreda Foundation, with our tagline of “Inspiring the Next Generation”, we will continue following the Co-op’s ongoing campaign with considerable interest.
Photo: Ellie-Mae with friend Leah (7) & brother Owen Rigby (4)
A seven-year-old who lost both legs and one arm to infant meningitis has raised more than £2000 in a charity walk, on behalf of her church roof fund.
Last week Ellie-Mae Mellor of Burslem completed 400 metres around Northwood Stadium in aid of St Mary’s Church, Norton. Ellie-Mae – a pupil at St Mary’s Catholic Primary School – contracted meningococcal septicaemia when just a few months old, and lost three limbs, as well as her cheeks, earlobes, top lip and fingertips. To the surprise of experts, who said she had only a slim chance of survival and would probably be unable to move around, she has come through a total of 76 operations (so far) with a fighting spirit, and learning that her church might have to close if the roof couldn’t be repaired very soon, she determined to help with its fund-raising campaign by doing her own charity walk.
Financial and other support for Ellie-Mae’s amazing fund-raising event on 10 July came from a variety of sources, including Mercedes-Benz and card company Carte Blanche, as well as through her website http://www.elliemaemellor.co.uk/, and personal donations on the day. Initially she had hoped to raise £250, but the final total was nearly ten times that. Her indomitable spirit and the publicity raised by her brave effort rightly attracted a lot of givers, resulting in her achieving almost 10% of the total raised by the church’s roof-repair fund to date. Tearful tributes have been paid to her sterling efforts, and her headteacher has been quoted as saying that she is “the most inspirational and determined child [he has] ever met”. On the day, more than two hundred children cheered the seven-year-old on, as she completed the challenging walk in just 45 minutes.
What a star! It’s probably still not too late to make a donation, if you visit Ellie-Mae’s website now.
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