Super Sunday Events help raise nearly £40,000 for Heart, Urology and Cancer Funds
Three fundraising events on the last Sunday in September raised nearly £38,500 for three of UCLH’s charitable funds, with hundreds of staff, patients and supporters crossing six London bridges and walking or running around Regent’s Park.
More than 40 walkers took part in the Advanced Heart Failure Fund’s first ever
fund-raising event, led by Dr Martin Thomas, Dr Simon Woldman and nurse Jayne Bragg. They invited patients and supporters to walk 10km in a loop around Regent’s Park, not a particular taxing distance for a fit person, but a great challenge for some of their patients.
The walkers included Vincenzo Avanzato, who suffers from dilated cardiomyopathy and would have struggled to climb a set of stairs two years ago. But after attending the Heart Failure Clinic, he was able to complete the full distance and raised over £2,000 with the support of his family and friends.
Altogether the walkers raised £10,000 towards a £30,000 Aquadex Flexflow system, which removes the excess fluid that can build up in the bodies of heart patients. Buying this piece of equipment would lead to shorter and less stressful hospitals stays for patients and enable the team at the Heart Hospital to treat more people with advanced heart failure. Meanwhile, in another part of Regent’s Park, the day’s most energetic event was under way, with the first Parnell Fund 5km fun run bringing together more than 40 runners.
Thirteen year-old Freya Wood, whose father Dan is a consultant at UCLH, won the event in just over 16 minutes and the team led by consultant urological surgeon Tamsin Greenwell took the team prize. Donations and sponsorship raised £3,600 towards the work of the Female and Reconstructive Urology service.
Bristol-based garage owner Neville Parnell, who set up the fund to say thank-you for the major bladder and urology surgery he received at the hospital, was delighted with the outcome, The 42-year-old has already raised £13,000 towards his £25,000 target by running several marathons, climbing Mount Everest and taking part in a 150-mile canoe ride from Bath to Westminster. Across town, more than 220 walkers completed the six-mile Leukaemia and Lymphoma Unit’s annual Bridgathon, which crossed six Thames bridges. TV and film actor Tom Goodman-Hill gave the group a rousing official send-off.
It was a particularly special event for patient Tsige Birru-Bente, whose husband marked her birthday with a beautiful bouquet of flowers and an enormous cake, which was shared out among the delighted walkers and volunteers. Overall, the event is expected to raise over £25,000 to help the fund provide equipment and services for leukaemia patients.