SYLVIA MORRIS, BCAh
Sylvia, of Stapleford, set up the Karen Morris Memorial Trust (KMMT) in 1999, in memory of her eldest daughter, Karen, who passed away after losing her battle with chronic myeloid leukaemia, aged just 23. As soon as Karen was diagnosed, she began fundraising and agreed to front a campaign for the Sue Harris Bone Marrow Trust, resulting in thousands of people joining the bone marrow register, and raising tens of thousands of pounds. During the 12 months of her illness Karen also raised more money for them and for Leuka 2000.
Sylvia started the charity to continue Karen’s work, and since then, the KMMT has raised a staggering amount of money that now totals almost £2 million. Some of the money has been used to set up and fund four ‘Karen’s Homes from Home’ facilities – at four of the UK’s leading leukaemia hospitals. The Homes from Home provide private accommodation for 13 families on site at any one time, so families can be together in their time of greatest need.
They have been so successful that Charles Craddock, Professor of haematooncology at Queen Elizabeth Hospital, Birmingham, said that Karen’s Home from Home was a central part of their bone marrow transplant strategy and the hospital would remain incredibly grateful for KMMT’s generosity.
The KMMT has also funded a number of complementary services for haematology patients which would not otherwise be available, which are proven to alleviate the emotional, and thereby the physical pain of leukaemia patients and bring some comfort to their nearest and dearest.
Nominated by David Booth