It's National Meningitis Awareness Week and I thought I'd share some information about a lovely friend of mine who is climbing Mount Kilimanjaro in order to raise much needed funds and awareness of a cruel illness that nearly cost them their daughter.
Nicky McClure from Wimborne has been named as a regional Ambassador for Meningitis Research Foundation (MRF) during their national Meningitis Awareness Week (16 - 22 September 2013).
Meningitis Research Foundation estimates that meningitis and septicaemia affect approx ten people in the UK and Ireland every day. They are deadly diseases that can strike without warning, killing one in ten, and leaving a quarter of survivors with life altering after-effects ranging from deafness and brain damage to loss of limbs. Children under five and students are most at risk, but the diseases can strike at any age and not all forms are covered by vaccines.
MRF Ambassadors are active members of the charity who all have personal experience of the diseases. They have been asked to take on this new voluntary role because they have the knowledge and skills to represent the organisation at the local and regional level.
Nicky said: “Megan was rushed to hospital in 2006 when she was 3 days old where they started treating her for meningitis straight away. We were told the next 24 hours were critical and if we had waited any longer to bring her in we would have lost her. We are incredibly lucky to have a happy, healthy daughter and in many ways it still affects us when we hear about people who were not as lucky as we are. I’m honoured to have been asked to become an Ambassador and will make sure my local community know what to look out for. I have actually signed up to climb Mount Kilimanjaro for MRF at the beginning of October so if anyone would like to donate please visit my Justgiving page at: www.justgiving.com/nickymcclure.”
Chris Head, Chief Executive of Meningitis Research Foundation said: “Nicky brings many qualities to this role and has been involved with the charity for many years so we are delighted she has agreed to represent the work we do in Wimborne. We now have 50 Ambassadors in the UK and Wales and they take on a variety of roles from speaking to the local media about our latest campaigns to giving talks in nurseries, schools and colleges across the region. They can also offer tips and resources for local people who want to get involved in fundraising for us; as well as organising, participating in and assisting with events.”
Meningitis is a hot topic in the UK and Ireland right now because a new vaccine for Meningococcal B infection (Men B) is currently under-consideration and may not be introduced because of costs. We are extremely disappointed by this and campaigning hard for a change of heart. Other vaccines have almost eliminated many other types of meningitis, but people cannot assume they are fully protected against all strains so our Ambassadors are spreading the word about the symptoms. People need to act fast if they suspect meningitis, it is essential to saving lives.”
If you want to donate to Nicky's fund you can do by texting MEGS71 £5 to 70070 - Lots of luck from all the Moo's in your challenge we look forward to seeing some pictures and following your progress.