1139. Mark Solan
Mark Solan, from County Durham, set up the ‘Solan Connor Fawcett Family Cancer Trust’, helping hundreds of families across the North East affected by cancer.
The charity supports cancer patients with grants to help with their wellbeing, such as new clothing, trips to the beautician or short breaks. The Trust provides wigs for patients undergoing chemotherapy and Mark even recently organised a wedding for a cancer patient. The Trust also provides advice services and relaxation rooms for patients and families. After originally raising £20,000 through a charity boxing match in memory of his mother and grandmother, Mark was inspired to make his fundraising more sustainable. He opened the Trust’s first boutique in 2017 and the charity has another shop opening in Ferryhill and further support groups running across the North East.
In a personal letter to Mark, Prime Minister Theresa May said:
“The success of the ‘Solan Connor Fawcett Family Cancer Trust’, in memory of your mother and grandmother, is a testament to your passion and dedication to improve the lives of those living with cancer. Your grants are giving patients and their families access to important services which improve wellbeing, and you should feel extremely proud of the difference you are making in their lives.”
Helen Goodman, Mark’s local MP for Bishop Auckland, said:
“I’m very pleased that Mark is being recognised for his wonderful work with the ‘Solan Connor Fawcett Family Cancer Trust’. What started out as a fundraising event in 2015 has since snowballed into an amazing charity, doing much-valued work in the community which I saw first-hand when I visited one of his shops in Spennymoor. Through his work with the Trust, Mark has made an extraordinary impact on families affected by cancer in County Durham – I am delighted that he has received this Points of Light Award.”
“To receive recognition for helping local families going through what my family experienced due to a cancer diagnosis leaves me feeling both very proud and very humbled. To see how my small community have rallied around to support me in my quest to help those in need is nothing short of inspirational, and it’s from the support that I receive and the help that I give that I find my inspiration and motivation to do what we do every day.”
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