Gina and Eve, Directors of Specsavers, Romsey, walked 25.5 miles with a fabulous team from their Branch walking to help children's eye research. We are hugely grateful to Specsavers for their continued support. Their team 'powered on' and reached Romsey when the rest of us were still wandering along! We're all really grateful for your help (and possibly a bit envious of your energy levels!)
A team of walkers including Marion (who works with young patients in SEU), Jane Hannifan, family and friends, Ailsa (GoS), daughter Kate with dog Agnes and a team from Specsavers Romsey all walked 25.5 miles on the Rotary Test Way Walk at the beginning of October. It was a glorious day and we all managed the whole distance. Sarah Saunders-Davies walked 11 miles and also raised a tremendous sum so we're looking to receive a figure with some £000's on the end when all donations are processed by Rotary. Thanks to everyone for their generous support for children's eye research.
Huge thanks to Helena, who is a clinican/academic researcher in our vision science team in Southampton, and Monica for also participating in the Southampton 5k Gung-ho event in June 2017. They have raised £400 to help vision science research projects and we are tremendously grateful for their support. Well done to you both on getting round the course on such a hot day and, again, thanks from all of us.
Well done to Janice and Tom who participated in an early 'wave' of competitiors who ran 5k and mountaineered over obstacles on one of the hottest days of the year. Janice works as an Administrator in the vision science laboratories and understands how vital our funding is to help move projects on and ran the race wearing one of our 'eyeball' costumes! Well done to both of you for raising in excess of your target. £230 plus Gift Aid has made a great total in excess of £270. Congratulations to you both and thanks from us.
Many thanks to Robert Mitchell, Rosie Bromfield-Young, Jack Aalen, Laura Aalen and Owen Wright who took part in a tandem skydive on the 21 May to raise funds for Gift of Sight. The date happily coincided with Rosie's birthday. After a delayed start the team took off together at 2pm. Unfortunately Jack was unable to participate on the day but we thank him and all the other team members for their fantastic fundraising. Sponsorship is still being collected but a final figure for the Skydive will be added to this page shortly.
Professor Andrew Lotery, his wife Helen, son Christopher with Savannah Lynn (one of our PhD students) and her finace Alec ran the Southampton ABP Half Marathon on Sunday 23 April 2017.
'Team Lotery' have raised almost £2000, with funds still coming in, with Savannah and Alec topping their target to over £400. Huge thanks to all patients, friends, families and Gift of Sight supporters who have generously donated on line to encourage the time. Your generosity is very much appreciated.
Jenny and Ed organised their participation in a Skydive on 1 April (!) to raise funds for Gift of Sight. This was Jenny's birthday and one she particularly wishes to acknowledge - what a generous way to do it! Ed is her nephew and signed up to keep her company. Friends and families made a party of it at Old Sarum and we are grateful to them for raising over £3000 for Gift of Sight.
Ailsa was pleased to attend a meeting of the Forester's Friendly Society Court No.5069 in April. Pat Swadling, the outgoing Chief Ranger, had chosen Gift of Sight as his charity for his year in office, and it is always a pleasure to meet up with groupls of people who have fundraised for Gift of Sight on previous occasions.
Pat decided to put the funds to support children's eye research as there are many critical projects being undertaken which will help these young patients in the future.
Jackie Davies organised and ran a cake sale and tombola in Southampton Eye Unit on the 3 April. Ably assisted by Lisa Skellon the event raised £416 to support research into children's eye disease.
Many thanks to Jackie for all her hard work and, of course, to Lisa for helping at the sale. Jackie's continuing support is very much appreciated by us all.
Louise signed up to raise £500 for Gift of Sight by running the Dewsbury 10k run. She has exceeded her goal and raised £631.40 which will be a tremendous help to our vision science research team.
Many thanks for your support Louise - we're all really grateful for your help.
Many thanks to the members of Freegrounds Coffee Group who meet in Hedge End on a monthly basis and who have been fundraising for Gift of Sight as their Charity of the Year.
Ann Smith presented a cheque for £450 to Ailsa, who gave a short talk on the work undertaken by our Vision Science group. It is always a pleasure to pass on details of our projects and to meet so many kind people.
Thank you all for your support for our work. Your kind donation is very much appreciated.
Over 600 tickets sold for the most recent Carol Concert held in Romsey Abbey and we were joined by a host of dignitaries and supporters. Speakers this year were Mr John Rutter CBE composer and conductor of mainly choral music, who read the poem 'The Ballad of the Bread Man' by Charles Causley. We were also honoured to hear him conduct three of his pieces. Mr Bruce Parker MBE, who is well known locally for regional television appearances and for his charity work, read from Helen Keller's article taken from the Atlantic Monthly 1933 which was well chosen and very emotive. Music was provided by Aurum Vocale with carols from a wide variety of composers including Brahms, Kenneth Leighton and John Joubert.
Professor Andrew Lotery updated guests on Gift of Sight projects over the past year. All the team join me in expressing our huge thanks to Dr Philly Sargent and her event committee for another resoundly successful event.
The Vision Science Research team in Southampton hosted the recent UK Eye Genetics Group Conference at the Grand Harbour Hotel, Southampton. Delegates from other research institutions in the UK attended and a packed programme gave details of projects being carried out to help understand the causes of genetic mutations which cause blinding eye diseases.
Working together collaboratively means that much of the data is shared and this should help lead to the identification of novel treatments to benefit patients in the future.
Jane has been actively fundraising for us for a whole year and has exceeded her ambitious target of £5000. Huge thanks to Jane, her fabulous circle of friends who have been fundraising for her, and her family. Husband Pete and sons Ed and Oliver have been a tremendous support and have been there for Jane all the way. It has been a pleasure and a privilege to join in with Jane's events and I know that we'll keep in touch.
Heartfelt thanks to you all.
Heartfelt thanks to the Directors of Specsavers, Lymington (David Macro and Neil Constantine-Smith) who are both hugely supportive of Gift of Sight. A cheque was presented at the time of the opening of the enlarged premises on the 16 July and was received by Mr Jay Self, Associate Professor of Ophthalmology at the University of Southampton and Ailsa Walter (Gift of Sight).
The team at Specsavers, Lymington continuously fundraise for Gift of Sight and value the fact that translational research (from clinic to laboratory) will help patients to experience the opportunity of the latest treatments on offer in clinics.
Jackie and her team have raised funds to support Jane Hannifan's year of fundraising by entering their pedal car in the British Pedal Car Grand Prix which was held at Ringwood on Sunday 10 July. The team members - Jackie, Jo, Emma and Denise were helped by Rob and Tom 'in the pit'. Ellie and Chelsea came along in their eyeball costumes to give support and we all had a great time following the team's two hour push. The team came second in the ladies group which was a great result.
Grateful thanks to Jess Edwards and her team at the Santo Lounge in Shirley, Southampton who raised £490 during the month of June to support our vision research projects. Events included a bingo evening, a cake sale and a raffle and we know that the team put masses of energy and enthusiasm into every event. Huge thanks from us all.
Prof Lotery, Dr Hussein Almuhtaseb, Sara Kearsey and Sharon Ketley from Southampton Eye Unit were joined by Pete Dobson, who is related to a patient, to abseil down the Emirates Spinnaker tower on Sunday 19th June to raise funds.
Thank you all for being such great sports, facing a tremendous challenge and raising a huge amount for Gift of Sight. The money is still being counted so we'll add the total in due course.
Gina Graham, one of the Directors from Romsey Specsavers, competed in the Cotswold Half Iron Man to raise funds for Gift of Sight. A gruelling race consisting of a swim of 1.2 miles, 56 mile cycle and finishing with a 13.1 mile run. Many thanks Gina for all your achievements and well done on coming 2nd in your category.
Sally Haines and Jason Gould feel so passionate about eye research funded by Gift of Sight that they decided to ask family and friends to support us in lieu of wedding gifts. Their generosity has led to gifts of over £3,000 being donated.
Jason suffers from Macular Oedema and has participated in one of Professor Lotery's research programmes.
We are honoured to have been a part of Jason and Sally’s special day and very grateful for their kindness and generosity.