AN INTREPID fund-raiser has handed over a cheque for over £6,000 to a cause close to her heart after completing a gruelling charity trek across the Great Wall of China.
Lucy Harborne took on the challenge in memory of her uncle Mark, from Solihull, who was treated on the Ward 19 blood cancer unit at Birmingham Heartlands Hospital, part of Heart of England NHS Foundation Trust, but died after a courageous five-year battle with the disease.
The 23-year-old and her family had nothing but praise for the treatment her uncle received and the staff on Ward 19 which is why she was so keen to take on such a challenge and in doing so raise a fantastic total of £6,311 to support the unit.
She said: “During the past five years Ward 19 supported Mark and my family huge amounts.
“He always went on about how great the nurses were and how they put up with his sense of humour.
“The doctors and nurses really kept his spirits high for a long time.
“The appeal received a massive amount of support from family, friends and colleagues – we were blown away by people’s generosity. Our fundraising page received so many donations that in six months I had to raise the fundraising target twice.
“I had such a great experience doing the challenge. I had never been to China before but it was amazing. The trekking pace was tough but fortunately I had trained hard in the six months before so I coped with it quite well. The entire trip was beautiful and I would recommend the experience to everyone.”
Dr Manos Nikolousis, clinical director on Ward 19, thanked Lucy for the ‘wonderfully generous’ donation and explained how the money would be used.
He said: “I and the rest of the staff on Ward 19 are extremely grateful to Lucy for wanting to raise money for the unit in this way and she can be assured the money she has raised will go towards giving real benefits to patients who use our service.
“The donation will go directly towards our chemotherapy at home service which involves a specialist nurse going to the home of patients with blood cancer conditions or reduced mobility to deliver chemotherapy directly at their address, without the need for them to come to the hospital.”
Lucy has now set her sights on another adventurous fundraising challenge for Ward 19 as she gets set to take part in the Three Peaks Challenge in June taking on the three highest peaks in Britain – Ben Nevis in Scotland, Scafell Pike in England and Mount Snowdon in Wales – all in the space of just 24 hours.
For more information about this initiative and to support Lucy in her new adventure visit www.justgiving.com/Lucy-Harborne2/ or call the Heart of England NHS Foundation Trust fundraising team on 0121 424 3838