Children and young people’s cancer support charity CLIC Sargent has won a charity partnership with retailer Morrisons worth around £7 million.
The charity faced strong competition from Age UK in the supermarket’s colleague ballot last month, which saw 50,000 Morrisons colleagues cast their votes to decide who would become their next ‘Raise a Smile’ charity partner.
Now CLIC Sargent plans to use this new funding, set to be raised by Morrisons colleagues and customers over the next three years, to increase the amount of financial support it provides to young people and families who are struggling with the extra living expenses a cancer diagnosis brings, like long-distance travel for specialist treatment.
The UK-wide charity will also expand its specialist nursing programme, which maximises the amount of time that young people can spend safely at home, and invest in other essential projects that will reduce the devastating impact of cancer on young lives.
Kate Lee, CEO, CLIC Sargent, said:
"We can't wait to start fundraising with the wonderful people at Morrisons, and welcome them all to join CLIC Sargent’s fight for young lives against cancer.
"Our nurses, social workers and other frontline staff across the UK work tirelessly to limit the damage cancer causes beyond a child or young person's health. Now together with Morrisons colleagues, we’ll be able to stop cancer destroying more young lives than ever.
“Thousands of people across the UK got involved in our campaign - and without you this simply wouldn’t have happened. We cannot thank you all enough.”
David Scott, Head of Corporate Affairs, Morrisons, said:
“Morrisons raised over £7.3 million for Sue Ryder during our last partnership, to help give more people the care they want at the end of their lives. Our colleagues were at the heart of that partnership and I’m confident they’ll help us make a real difference to the families supported by CLIC Sargent. We’re delighted to be working with such a fantastic cause over the next three years.”
Over a thousand of CLIC Sargent's supporters and service users signed up to champion the charity at a local level ahead of, and during the ballot. The charity's campaign also saw families helped by CLIC Sargent fronting the appeal on posters, and speaking out about their experiences via social, local and national media.
This included Lara Whiston and her daughter Amber, a 7-year-old from Sheffield who has been supported by the CLIC Sargent team since she was diagnosed with a brain tumour at just 8-months-old. Lara and Amber starred in a short online film about their lives for the campaign, which has been watched over 60k times on Facebook.
Lara Whiston said:
“We did it! For CLIC Sargent to win with 65% of the vote is a shock to be honest, and it means a lot to see so much love coming from the Morrisons team for families like ours.”
CLIC Sargent's campaign saw a number of its celebrity supporters like comedian Chris Ramsey and presenter Gaby Roslin take to social media to show their support for the charity’s bid.
BT Sport presenter Jake Humphrey also took the unusual step of broadcasting live using Facebook from his local Morrisons store in Norwich. At the store he met and interviewed Steve Durbridge who has worked at Morrisons for 27 years, and his daughter Freya, aged 3, who has cancer and is supported by the charity. The moving interview has been watched over 220,000 times.
How the money raised will be spent
People: CLIC Sargent will create a brand new team of expert nurses who will go out into local communities to educate health and social care professionals so that they have the skills to provide the best possible care for children and young people with cancer.
Places: CLIC Sargent will create new Home Hubs close to Specialist Treatment Hospitals, providing a welcoming environment for families to take a much needed break from the intensity of hospital.
Practical Things: CLIC Sargent will provide grants to families across every Morrisons community to help them cope with the financial consequences of a cancer diagnosis. They will also develop a ground-breaking new digital hub, giving thousands of young people and families access to expert advice and information when and where they want it.
For more information, an interview or images please contact Claire Monger on 020 8752 2938 or email firstname.lastname@example.org