Kind An­drew does his bit to aid Marie Curie

Strathearn Herald - - NEWS - Johnathon Men­zies

A com­mit­ted Strath fundraiser has is­sued a call for big-hearted lo­cals to join a group de­signed to sup­port a char­ity close to his heart.

Cri­eff res­i­dent An­drew Aitken is back­ing ter­mi­nal ill­ness char­ity Marie Curie after his fa­ther died of cancer in De­cem­ber 2014 and was cared for at home by nurses em­ployed by the good cause.

As months went by in 2014, An­drew and his fam­ily wit­nessed his fa­ther’s health grad­u­ally de­clin­ing. The fam­ily knew that he wanted to spend his fi­nal days at home with his loved ones around him.

An­drew said: “For two weeks that De­cem­ber, we had the ser­vices of Marie Curie nurses to help with care in the evenings and nights. This al­lowed the strain on my mum, brother and my­self to be eased sig­nif­i­cantly and made it pos­si­ble for my dad to stay at home and ful­fil his last wish.”

Since los­ing his fa­ther, An­drew has shown his sup­port for Marie Curie by rais­ing money through a se­ries of spon­sored chal­lenges, in­clud­ing marathons, cy­cles and triathlons – as well as or­gan­is­ing the an­nual Great Daf­fodil Ap­peal col­lec­tion in Cri­eff.

Now the young fa­ther would like to set up a Marie Curie fundrais­ing group in Cri­eff and the sur­round­ing area.

An­drew said “With­out a lo­cal sup­port group, it has been hard to or­gan­ise and co­or­di­nate ac­tiv­i­ties.

“To have a fundrais­ing group set up within the Cri­eff and Strat­hearn area would be amaz­ing.

“I be­lieve it will help raise the pro­file of Marie Curie and the in­cred­i­ble work the char­ity and nurses do with pal­lia­tive care within the area.

“Marie Curie would be more vis­i­ble and vi­tal funds se­cured so many more fam­i­lies, like mine, can ben­e­fit from the ser­vices Marie Curie pro­vides.”

He­len Zollinger, a com­mu­nity fundraiser for the char­ity, said “Be­ing part of a fundrais­ing group is a fun, flex­i­ble and so­cia­ble way to vol­un­teer in your lo­cal com­mu­nity and make a real dif­fer­ence to those liv­ing with a ter­mi­nal ill­ness, and their fam­i­lies.

“There are over 90 Marie Curie fundrais­ing groups in Scot­land but as yet, there is no group in the Strat­hearn area.”

An in­for­mal meet­ing in re­la­tion to the for­ma­tion of the group will be held in the Earn Room at Cri­eff Hy­dro Ho­tel from 6.30pm on Thursday, Jan­uary 18.

All are warmly in­vited to at­tend, hear from An­drew and other sup­port­ers who have been helped by Marie Curie and find out more about be­ing part of a lo­cal fundrais­ing group.

Any­one who would like to at­tend can con­tact He­len on 0131 561 3948 or by send­ing an email to he­len.zollinger@mariecurie.

RSVPs can also be sub­mit­ted via the web­site www.mariecuriecrieff.

Marie Curie em­ploys more than 2000 nurses, doc­tors and other health­care pro­fes­sion­als, and with its nine hos­pices around the UK, is the largest provider of hospice beds out­side of the NHS.

Fundrais­ing Cri­eff res­i­dent and young fa­ther, An­drew Aitken, has been a keen sup­porter of the ter­mi­nal ill­ness char­ity, Marie Curie, since his fa­ther died of cancer three years ago

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