Charity auction kick-starts final year of fundraising

Posted on in Fundraising

When 42-year-old Michelle Parker lost her fight for life in 2010 her partner Darren Watson launched a four-year-fundraising drive to keep her memory alive.

Darren and Shelly

Michelle – known as Shelly to her friends – battled two brain tumours but despite everything she had been through she made Darren promise to give something back to The James Cook University Hospital in Middlesbrough for the amazing care she received.

Darren officially launched The Michelle Parker Charity with the aim of raising as much as possible to buy state-of-the-art equipment for the neurosurgery team at the Middlesbrough hospital.

He is now planning his third annual charity night and auction at Rockliffe Hall Hotel near Darlington and urging everyone to continue to support the campaign as it heads into its final year so they can raise as much as possible to help future patients.

Sponsored by Teesside Audi and B Premier Hair Design, the black tie event takes place on Friday 18 October 2012 at 7pm and includes a three-course meal, auction, raffle and disco.

The fantastic auction prizes range from signed Manchester United and Middlesbrough Football Club shirts to Swarovski figurines.

Darren said: “I know Shelly would be so proud of everyone who has supported me in all our fundraising events.

“This year has been a good year. We had an amazing charity golf day at Darlington Gold Club which raised £1,200 so we are well on our way to raising a good amount for James Cook.

“We’ve had some fantastic support over the past three years but we are not finished yet so please get behind us for this final year of fundraising in memory of Shelly.”

Darren hopes to raise enough to buy leading edge equipment for the neurosurgical theatre, including:

An operating microscope with specialist immunofluorescent filters which will allow more radical removal of brain tumours

Highly specialised ultrasound scanning equipment which can be used to identify the position and extent of tumours during surgery

An image guided neuronavigation system which allows 3D modelling of tumours before surgery so that the operations can be performed with greater precision

Specialist endoscopic equipment which allows keyhole surgery for treatment of tumours.

“The care Shelly received at James Cook was unbelievable and the nursing care she had was amazing,” said Darren.

Consultant neurosurgeon Philip Kane added: “All funds raised in Michelle’s name will be donated to the neurosurgery department with the aim of equipping the neurosurgical theatre with additional state-of-the-art-equipment to ensure our patients have access to the very best treatments and the very latest technology.”

Tickets are £44 and there are still a few available on a first come first served basis. For more details or to pledge your support contact Darren on 07973 462878.