Andy Jackson
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Outstanding October

Andy Jackson
Posted by
01 Nov 2013

Off the back of the momentum created by September’s Blood Cancer Awareness Month, October has been another fantastic month. Highlights for me include Newton’s fantastic Facebook Live session and Toby’s remarkable performance at the Criterion.

However there’s been so much more besides and this blog is a tribute to all your wonderful efforts during October:

1. Toby’s performance at the Criterion

On Monday 24th October Toby Peach brought his show about his experiences with Hodgkin lymphoma, The Eulogy of Toby Peach’, to London’s Criterion theatre for a special performance and an audience of more than 300 people – his largest to date.

The show was a huge success raising almost £3000 and Toby’s extraordinary performance had a huge impact on the audience which was a real mixture of theatre goers, fundraisers, patients and, of course, a strong Ambassador contingent who are pictured below with Toby and our acting CEO, Diana:

A huge, huge thank you to Toby for a brilliant performance and to all the Ambassadors that came along and helped ensure it was such a huge success.

I know a number of you were interested in seeing the show but couldn’t make it to London. Toby will be touring the show at a number of venues around the UK in the upcoming months starting with Canterbury on the 3rd and 4th December.

A full list of Toby’s upcoming tour dates our available on Toby’s website.

2. Fundraising balls

Last month saw Anna Mamwell and Donna Dunn both held hugely successful fundraising Balls. Anna’s Ball featured a magician, photo booth, auction, raffle and a brilliant performance by Gary Barlow lookalike and performer Dan Hadfield.

165 guests attended the ball and Anna split the proceeds between Bloodwise and Macmillan who were fantastically supportive of her during her treatment.

Donna’s Legacy Ball in memory of her daughter, Emily, who sadly passed away from Burkitt’s lymphoma earlier this year, raised an incredible £52,000 towards a new haematology and transplant unit in Cardiff where Emily received her treatment.

The Ball was attended by huge number of friends and family of Emily and was a really fitting tribute to a remarkable teenager that did so much to raise awareness of blood cancer and help others.

Read more about the Ball here:

3. Spreading awareness in your local area

Blood Cancer Awareness Month may be over but this hasn’t stopped you from continuing to spread the word by putting up posters and handing out leaflets and patient information booklets.

Special mention must go to Wendy Leigh who has now persuaded no less than 3 of her local Starbucks coffee shops to put up one of our posters and hand out some of our charity wristbands in exchange for a small donation.

A huge thank you to each and every single one of you who is continuing to spread the word about us in your local area. You’re helping us reach out to more people than we could ever possibly hope to reach on our own and this is helping ensure more and more people are getting in touch with us. So keep up the good work!

To order more posters and patient information and for more ways on how to get involved in helping to raise awareness in your local area please email Afia at

4. Further media coverage

You helped us secure even more press and media coverage in October. Helen Tait made it into the Northumberland Gazette thanks to the huge success of the hugely successful annual Holy Island Forget-Me-Not Walk while George Norton made the front page, no less, of the South London Press.  

Last and by no means least, Lucy Hart was featured on page 79 of last month’s Woman and Home Magazine alongside her sister in a brilliant piece about her transplant and experiences with leukaemia.

If you’d like to be considered for press work and haven’t yet shared your story please contact Steph or Henry at

5. Helen Allen sharing her experiences of Hodgkin lymphoma

Earlier this month Helen shared her experiences of Hodgkin lymphoma in the form of a blog which she also very kindly also agreed for us to put out on the Bloodwise Facebook page.

This was the first time that she’d ever written about her experiences with Hodgkin lymphoma and was incredibly well received by other patients and supporters.

A huge thank you to Helen for sharing her story – it really does make a huge difference to others affected by blood cancer and has a huge impact upon raising awareness and inspiring others to act too.

Indeed if you were in any doubt about the impact that sharing experiences can have then you should look no further than the experience of Sylvia Priest whose blog about her husband’s experiences with ALL prompted a colleague to sign up for the bone marrow register:

If you’d like to blog about your experiences with blood cancer do send me an email at and I’ll be able to send you more details on how to get started.

Other news

October was also a notable month for helping spread awareness about blood cancer supporting the wider community.

Jane Leahy was on hand to help our friends at DKMS in their bid to help commuters to sign up to the stem cell register at Charing Cross Station:

Meanwhile Kate Giles shared her experiences at the Lymphoma Association’s conference in Cardiff whilst Annabel Hamilton did a fantastic speech for practice nurses learning about living with blood cancer and beyond where she naturally promoted Bloodwise.

Most recently Emma Paine was outside Harrods last week performing a choreographed dance as part of a flash mob event to raise awareness of MDS Awareness Day which you can watch below:

 I’d like to end the blog by wishing Melody Berthoud a very happy (and belated) 40th birthday and by asking you all to consider helping out Samantha Farr with her upcoming charity night on 12th November.

Sam has put a lot of hard work in to getting the evening organised and wants to make it as big a success as possible so would really appreciate any help you can give her promoting the event, selling tickets or sourcing raffle prizes. For more info please visit her Facebook event page.