Superhero Sci-Fi Fundraiser
768. Keith Armour
Keith Armour, from Livingston, is the founder of an innovative pop-culture, comic and movie convention called the Capital Sci-Fi Con to raise money for Children’s Hospices Across Scotland’s (CHAS) Rachel House children’s hospice.
Keith organised the first convention in 2016, which attracted over 5,000 participants and raised £37,000. This year’s convention in February had 7,000 attendees in total, including children from CHAS (who were given free priority tickets), and raised over £75,000. To give a sense of the scale of Keith’s funding, this would be enough to cover the food bill for two years at Rachel House.
CHAS is Scotland’s national children’s hospice service, supporting families across Scotland at its hospices and also through its outreach teams who work in communities and hospitals across Scotland. Three children die each week in Scotland from a life-shortening condition and CHAS only reaches one in three children. The charity is determined to reach them all and Keith’s support is helping them to raise vital funds to do this.
Outside these standout events, Keith and his team frequently brighten the days of the children by visiting them in their sci-fi and superhero costumes. Keith is currently working with over 180 volunteers to plan the next convention, building on the success of previous years.
In a personal letter to Keith, Prime Minister Theresa May said:
“Through the Capital Sci-Fi Con, your fundraising is making a real difference to families supported by CHAS’ Rachel House Children’s Hospice. Your work has encouraged hundreds of others to volunteer and has been an inspiration to thousands of attendees. Your commitment to CHAS is truly remarkable, and you should be very proud of what you have achieved.”
Keith’s local MP, Hannah Bardell, said:
“Keith’s incredible fundraising efforts are a fun and innovative way to engage the community and raise awareness of – and money for – some very worthwhile causes. I’m thrilled that his work has been recognised with a Points of Light Award.
“Pop-culture and comics are an increasingly important part of our culture and economy too, just last month a Scottish comic book company, Millarworld, was sold to industry giant Netflix. Comic and movie conventions are growing in popularity, but to turn them into an opportunity to improve the lives of sick children is brilliant.
“Keith is indeed a shining light and a great example to others.”
“I am truly amazed and humbled for being recognised with a Points of Light award from the Prime Minister. When I started Capital Sci-Fi Con, I never in my wildest dreams expected to get this sort of acknowledgment. Not only does it recognise the effort I have put into this charity fundraising event but also the effort of all the volunteers who are part of Capital Sci-Fi Con and the Capital Sci-Fi Causeplayers.
“There are a lot of other individuals and companies that have contributed or supported our event and to them I say thank you! Without the huge community support we wouldn’t be able to raise as much money as we do for the hospice.”