Our aim was to raise £500 which would go directly to the cystic fibrosis trust, how this money would be spent would be at their discretion. But I have asked if it could be put towards gene therapy.
The trust at the moment are funding gene therapy trials, the aim is to replace the faulty gene in a cf body with a corrected, albeit artificial copy of the gene.
In another blog I will go on to be more specific about the facts and timeline so far of gene therapy but for now I want to fill you in on how our £500 target was smashed through as we went on to raise a staggering £1200!!
I say 'we' and 'our' because I want to draw attention to Leanne. A friend that helped me to organise the event. I feel as I am the sufferer I'm getting all the credit, when infact Leanne done as much, if not more than me to get the event to the large scale that it did.
I obviously wanted to raise awareness and money to the trust, who they are and what they do, as its something I suffer with and is close to my heart, but Leanne choose to go on this journey of her own accord with little to benefit from doing so. I, if around for long enough, could benefit from life saving treatments but if I don't I would like to feel I made a difference to the cf community by fundraising as much as I can. Leanne would not benefit in a direct way, just safe in the knowledge that with her determination she too made a difference.
We spent 3 months in total planning and arranging things, we have had many laughs and many tears together, but thanks to our vigorous planning and advertising we had a fantastic turnout.
We had the privelage of having Basildon coral society choir come and sing for us, as well as a fantastic singer on the behalf of effective entertainments.
We had Santa, mrs Claus and an elf donating there time to the grotto, giving out presents which were donated to us by hobbycraft.
A large cake stall, selling cakes that were donated to us, as well as teas coffees and different flavoured juices.
We had a children's corner where they could colour, play with toys, decorate their own cupcakes and make their own Christmas cards, again all of which was donated. We even had a face painter give up an afternoon for us.
Not to mention independent Buisnesses who came along to sell there goods, which added great variety to our shopping corner, everything from homemade cards, jewellery, Christmas gifts and sweets.
The most amazing stall was our raffle prizes, all of which were selflessly donated to us from friends, family and local Buisnesses such as, Ava grace gifts, The Circus Tavern, Sport and Star autographed memrobelia, Canvas city prints photoshoot and meal options from fish and chicken and nandos.
When I embarked on this first fundraising challenge I had no idea how much people would care about the cause, the support has been phenomenal and It will be the first of many fundraising events myself and Leanne will be doing. We already have plans for a charity football match, which a few top London clubs have offered to help with...but I won't give to much away just yet..lets just say the yids and hammers may be very happy ;)
After that, which we are hoping will take place around may, we will have a summer fete, bouncy castles, BBQ, ice cream man, outdoor games such as 3 legged races, welly throwing, shopping stalls and some fantastic entertainment throughout the day. So I hope people's support will stretch even further.
I wanted to take the time to thank everybody who was there on the day as well as the ones that supported from afar, weather it be a prize or cash donation or even advertising and spreading the word.
Unfortunately The Cystic Fibrosis Trust is not widely recognised as they do not have the funds for tv ads etc, so rely heaving on fundraising events to help make the lifes of sufferes much easier.
With the life expectancy for sufferers creeping up from just age 5 to mid the 30s (average) since the 1960's we are doing something right, advances have been made but unfortunately it is still an Incurable disease. Sufferers still face a lifelong challenge to stay alive and as healthy as possible in to their adult life. Yet some still lose their battle far too soon, leaving behind grieving families that are angry and frustrated at a disease that destroys the body year by year, and as of yet Incurable, CF is like living with a ticking time bomb, so please....
Together, lets make CF stand for 'Cure Found'
It can be beaten!!! .... we just need your help
With many heartfelt thanks I will leave you there with some photos of the day to look through