8th Dec, 2016

Rugby fans raise £25,000 for Marie Curie charity

Shaun Reynolds 28th Apr, 2016 Updated: 28th Oct, 2016

RUGBY fans in the city have helped raise tens of thousands of pounds at the Ricoh Arena to support people living with terminal illnesses and their families.

Over £25,000 was donated to Marie Curie after Wasps’ recent 28-6 victory over Northampton Saints –which saw the club organise a range of fund raising activities before and during the game.

The money raised will fund the equivalent of 1,267 nursing hours, and will help contribute towards caring for over 40,000 people in the UK living with a terminal illness and their loved ones.

Marie Curie Nurses provide free one-to-one nursing care and support overnight in people’s homes, usually for eight or nine hours. They also offer specialist round the clock care at the nine Marie Curie Hospices across the UK, including the one based at Solihull.

“The support received for our partnership with Wasps has been fantastic and the tremendous amount raised will have a huge impact in helping us continue providing invaluable services to people living with a terminal illness and their families,” said Jo Stradling, divisional general manager for the Midlands at Marie Curie.

“On behalf of Marie Curie I want to say a big thank you to everyone at Wasps, and their fans, for their generosity both at the match and in the build-up. We wish them the best of luck for the rest of the season.”

One volunteer who has first-hand experience of the work carried out by Marie Curie is the chair its Solihull Fundraising Group Suzanne Hughes.

“Marie Curie holds a special place in my heart for the care, support and laughter that the nurses provided to my mum in the last few weeks of her life,” said Suzanne, who was one of the 40 Marie Curie volunteers at the game.

“I had just left university and was faced with losing my mum. Marie Curie helped make my time with her very special which I will never forget. It’s something that can never be bought.

“It was an amazing day and hearing some of the stories of how Marie Curie had helped people, their families or someone they knew was a real privilege.”

A range of fundraising activities designed to make a lasting difference to the charity before, during and after ‘The Stinger’ match, which was Wasps’ flagship Aviva Premiership fixture for the season.

Many of the 17,000 fans wore yellow to raise awareness for Marie Curie, while others donated to the charity’s Great Daffodil Appeal, entered a prize draw and bought yellow t-shirts on the day to boost the fundraising total.

“This is a fantastic fundraising effort that will benefit the nursing care for so many people that are in need, and will go on to help this charity to continue the great work that they do in our area,” said David Armstrong, group chief executive officer of Wasps.

“The day was a resounding success and surpassed everybody’s expectations. It was really uplifting to see so many happy people sporting their yellow colours with pride – over 12,000 daffodil pins were sold on the day, and even the BT Sport presenters got in on the act with their striking yellow suits.”

To make a donation to Marie Curie visit JustGiving at www.justgiving.com/thestinger