DIRECTA - ULTIMATE PRIDE
Winner - The Day Family
Rosie Day had a serious heart condition requiring a transplant. She suffered a cardiac arrest on the 18th of December 2015 needing CPR from her mum Sara. She spent last Christmas in Great Ormond Street Hospital where she was eventually found to be in end stage heart failure and placed on a mechanical heart. She spent eight months in the Hospital waiting for a suitable transplant. Her Dad Barry, and Mum Sara, realized first hand the massive shortage of donors for children. They set about publicizing the shortage, and Rosie’s plight resulted in a significant following on social media, she now has thousands of followers. As a direct result of their awareness campaign hundreds of people made contact and the organ donation register list began to grow. During those 8 months Rosie unfortunately suffered a number of strokes and two brain bleeds. Early July 2016 Brave Rosie received her gift of life, a new heart. True to form, Mum and Dad agreed that the working valves from her old heart could be used to help another child. Rosie was discharged on the 28th September and is now receiving extensive Neuro rehabilitation from Tadworth hospital. Rosie’s bravery was of great interest encouraging many large organizations to select Cardio-Myopathy UK as their chosen charity. Rosie appeared on DIY SOS the big build @ GOSH and has also had an Eddie Stobart lorry named after her. She is on track to have raised over £100k for various charities over the last 12 months.
One of the many nominators, Dana Thomas, wrote
“The whole family have managed Rosie’s illness with a dignity that the rest of us can only hope to aspire to. All the while their daughter was seriously ill, waiting for a heart to become available, not only did they encourage people to have that difficult discussion and register for organ donation, they also set up children’s first aid training, including C.P.R. There can’t be a more deserving family in the Pride of Essex Awards.”
Highly Commended - The Robin Cancer Trust
Toby is the founder and chief executive officer of the Robin Cancer Trust. RCT was founded in 2012 following the death in January 2011 of Toby’s brother, Robin Freeman, aged just 24, after he was diagnosed with germ cell cancer. Whilst Rob was ill, Toby and his family realized there was a lack of information available to the public about germ cell cancer. They decided to become a hub of information of this rare form of cancer, so that other families wouldn’t have to suffer similarly. The RCT specifically aims to raise awareness of the little known ‘germ cell’ cancers, including both testicular and ovarian cancers, in 16-35 year olds. If detected early germ cell cancers are more than 90% curable. RCT educate young men and women about the signs & symptoms in order increase the chances of an early detection. The Robin Cancer Trust is the UK’s only dedicated germ cell cancer awareness charity. A group of 200 plus volunteers have already significantly raised awareness levels, but admit that there is a lot of work to be done. Meanwhile their combined efforts have raised over £50,000 for The Robin Cancer Trust, now a Registered charity.
Highly Commended - Peter Lawrence
Peter helps CHARMS and a disability sailing club at West Hanningfield. CHARMS is a charity dedicated to helping people in Essex who suffer from MS, ME, Cerebral Palsy and other neurological disorders. The Charity aims to help to provide sufferers with relief from their symptoms and to give assistance in making their lives more bearable. Peter is a great inspiration having represented the UK in sailing competitions. He suffers himself from progressive MS and has severe mobility problems, however he smiles and jokes non-stop, and is determined to be self-sufficient. Peter’s condition has deteriorated in recent months but even so he continues to be involved in fundraising for two charities. He is a real star.
Highly Commended - Peter Davis
Forty six years ago Peter was one of the founding members of the International Lions Club of Chelmsford. He has been an active member until recent times, serving the
community of Chelmsford and wider afield. Shortly after retirement Peter was diagnosed with Motor Neurone Disease, he did not let it stop him from continuing to help many others. In recent months he
has been hospitalized with Pneumonia, and then a Stroke, which has left him requiring constant help. However, whilst now not being able to actively participate in fundraising efforts and charitable
events, Peter remains an incredible inspiration to everyone who knows him, and also to those who hear about him. Through his determination, even at the age of 85, he proves that, no matter what
troubles are put before you…
you must strive to overcome them.
Highly Commended - David Gains
In little over 18 months, Dave has raised in excess of a staggering £40,000 for Macmillan’s Cancer Support. Not bad considering the original target was £500! With further fund raising events planned, that figure is set to rise further, breaking the £50,000 barrier. That alone is some achievement for any individual. But let’s give this some perspective. Dave has terminal cancer. Already dealing with the challenges of cerebral palsy, he was diagnosed with stage four liver cancer in 2014, whereby doctors gave him roughly a year to live. Since that diagnosis Dave has been quite remarkable, doggedly working to raise money for the charity in a bid to help others who suffer from the disease.
With a passion for cricket, Dave has represented Boreham, Great Baddow and Little Baddow whilst having been a huge part of the Woodham Mortimer Cricket Club ‘family’ for the previous two years. Dave has recently had to retire from the sport he loves due to illness at the tender age of 30. He played his last game in August, organizing a hugely successful cricket day at Little Baddow Cricket Club, which raised a massive £6,000 for the charity