Message from the Chair

First of all, I would like to thank you all for your continued support.  Due to your efforts, fundraising has been strong over the last twelve months which is very welcome.  

It is always sad when we hear about the death of children from neuroblastoma and our hearts go out to every family who has lost a child to this disease.  Just recently Bradley Lowery and Eileidh Paterson lost their battles and our thoughts are with their families. Such high-profile neuroblastoma journeys have left a legacy by generating intense local and national interest resulting in neuroblastoma emerging in the UK consciousness as a childhood cancer that desperately needs more research to find a cure.  

Over the last decades, leukaemia dominated the childhood cancer headlines, which led to incredible fundraising and investment in basic and clinical research.  As a direct result of this investment, over 90% of children with leukaemia are now cured.  More needs to be done but this is a remarkable story to the extent that former leukaemia charities have changed their names away from leukaemia to generic childhood cancer titles.  With your continued strong fundraising, we want to do the same for neuroblastoma and render our Neuroblastoma UK name redundant.

Much is going on within the charity. First, I would like to warmly thank Susan Hay for Chairing NBUK for three years until January this year. Susan oversaw the re-branding of The Neuroblastoma Society to the more dynamic and modern Neuroblastoma UK. I would also like to thank Yvonne Boyd, who has stepped down this Spring after 10 years overseeing our exceptional grant allocation processes. Yvonne managed five of our biennial grant rounds, overseeing the disbursement of some £2.5M of funds you raised to the best UK neuroblastoma research teams. We are unlikely to find a Grants Trustee with Yvonne’s grant management skills and dedication, so we are talking with the CCLG about collaborating on future grant rounds.

I took over as Acting Chair in January and would like to welcome Monica Proctor (Fundraising/Marketing), Faye Watts (Corporate Fundraising) and Alastair Whitington (Media) as new Trustees. We hope to introduce further Trustees in our next Newsletter.

Guy Blanchard, Acting Chair