JD Wetherspoon raised £23million for charity partner Young Lives vs Cancer

JD Wetherspoon has reached the incredible fundraising milestone of £23 million for their official charity partner Young Lives vs Cancer. For over two decades, the national pub chain has brought staff and customers from across the UK together to fundraise for the charity, who support young people with cancer (0-25) and their families.

Since the partnership began in 2002, JD Wetherspoon have hosted various events and organised an array of fundraising challenges to build up to this £23million milestone. The pub chain hosts several annual events such as hiking challenges, dart tournaments and the UK wide football tournament KICK, which brings staff from pubs across the nation together to play football and fundraise as teams.

A group of JDW colleagues and Young Lives vs Cancer staff are stood outside Wetherspoon House. Two people are crouched at the front in front of a line of people at the back, they are holding gold 2 and 3 balloons - everyone has their hands up in the air to celebrate.

JD Wetherspoon and Young Lives vs Cancer employees celebrate the £23million milestone

Many dedicated staff members have also taken on personal challenges to add to the company’s fundraising totals such as taking part in the London to Paris cycle and mountain hiking challenges. The ever-growing fundraising total has also been supported by JD Wetherspoon staff and customers alike getting involved in events like bake sales, raffles and quizzes in their local pubs.

Young Lives vs Cancer help young people with cancer (0-25) and their families from the moment of diagnosis. Their specialist social workers are there to provide the support they need, when they need it such as liaising with a child’s school, a parent’s employer or helping to navigate the costs of cancer. The charity also provides financial grants to help families with the costs of cancer such as travel to hospital, food and extra clothing. Their ten Home from Homes also offer families a free place to stay nearby to hospital.

Mum and dad, Melanie and Richard, know just how vital the support of Young Lives vs Cancer is after being supported by the charity when their late son, Jake, was diagnosed with a brain tumour at just 16. Sadly, Jake died only ten months after his diagnosis in April 2017.

Jake was an active young man who enjoyed cricket and table tennis – one day, while at school, he collapsed and tests later revealed he had a tumour on his brain. He went on to have radiotherapy treatment in hospital but sadly, in April 2017 he died at just 16 years old.

Throughout his treatment, and after Jake sadly died, his family were supported by Young Lives vs Cancer.

His family and friends have continued to fundraise for Young Lives vs Cancer in his memory as a group named Team JAWS. From busking to quiz nights, bucket collections to walking challenges, they continue to come together and fundraise in Jake’s memory.

Jake’s experience and the incredible fundraising his family and friends have completed since he sadly died has inspired many JD Wetherspoon colleagues while doing their own fundraising.

The £23 million raised by JD Wetherspoon has been integral to providing this support for young people with cancer. The money raised is enough to cover the cost of over 110,000 grants for families struggling with the costs of cancer.

Young Lives vs Cancer’s Strategic Partnerships Lead, Alex O’Connell said: “Thank you so much to every employee and customer at JD Wetherspoon who has helped to raise this amazing amount of money to help young people with cancer.

“Over 4,000 children and young people receive a cancer diagnosis every year. Our social workers are there to provide specialist support from the moment of diagnosis, to help with everything from speaking to a parent’s employer to taking away the stress of navigating the benefits system so they can focus on what matters, getting through treatment.

“The money JD Wetherspoon has raised will have helped hundreds of children and young people with cancer – from all of us at Young Lives vs Cancer, thank you.”

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