Russell team smash £100,000 charity target

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Led by director Diana Al-Zaidi, the Russell IPM team has raised a magnificent £100,000 for Leukaemia & Lymphoma Research and they have done it in just four and half years. A special celebration, held at the company’s site on Deeside on Friday 15 May, marked the achievement.

As Shakir Al-Zaidi explained the fund-raising effort began after their young grandson Callum Gosling was diagnosed with leukaemia. “We didn’t want to just sit down and feel sorry for ourselves,” he said.

Watching Callum’s brave battle through some very harsh treatment inspired them to set up the Russell IPM Foundation with a target of £100,000 and every £1 raised has been matched by £1 from the company.

So the fundraising began and as Shakir explained everyone has contributed. “With Diana’s determination and hard work from the whole team the target has now been achieved. Many members of the Russell team have made regular contributions through their salary, there have been sponsored bike rides, jumble sales, endless raffles, cup cake competitions, quiz nights and even an ice skating marathon!”

There has also been great support from the community local to the company’s North Wales base as well as many a raffle ticket purchased by pest professionals from up and down the country whilst visiting the Russell stand at events!

The celebration was attended by all Russell staff along with a number of friends and industry colleagues. Guests of honour were Ray Hughes, chairman of Flintshire County Council, recently re-elected local MP, Mark Tami and Catriona Tait from Leukaemia & Lymphoma Research. All three applauded the achievement.

A real contribution
Catriona explained how the amount raised will make a real contribution to the work of Leukaemia & Lymphoma Research. Over the past 10-15 years the advances made have had a huge impact, treatments are now less harsh and much more successful. Back then a diagnosis was pretty much a death sentence now there is an 80+% success rate for treatment.

MP Mark Tami has a special interest in leukaemia as his son was diagnosed with a particularly rare form when he was just 8 years old. His case was complex and he ultimately required a stem cell transplant. Mark Tami expressed his thanks to all those involved in raising so much money for such a great charity. He also added a plea for more people, especially young men, to come forward to take a simple saliva test for stem cell compatibility.

Chairman of Flintshire County Council Ray Hughes, who was accompanied by his wife Gwenda, concluded the formal proceedings.

He said “I feel very humble and proud to be with you today and I congratulate the company and all those who have contributed to this success. The Russell IPM Foundation was set-up to raise awareness of the role of research and to foster links with the local community. It has done both. All here today should be proud of this amazing achievement.

No let up in the fundraising
But the fundraising hadn’t stopped. Never one to miss an opportunity all guests were given the chance to purchase raffles tickets. TTwo great prizes were on offer; a week’s accommodation in Benalmá¡dena, Spain and VIP Tickets to the premier league match between Manchester United and Arsenal at Old Trafford.

Russell 100k Shakir

Shakir Al-Zaidi

Russell 100k Mark TamiMark Tami

Russell 100k Ray Hughes

Ray Hughes

Russell employee Rematata Puklicka had purchased the first ticket drawn. She chose the holiday which she will take with her husband Leszck, who also works for Russell. The Manchester United tickets were won by a Liverpool season ticket holder who promptly asked that they be auctioned off. Wather Zajr Russell’s regulatory manager made the highest bid. The total raised including a donation form a guest who was unable to attend came to another £400.

And if all this has inspired you to get involved follow this link to contribute.

Russell 100k raffleLeft to right: Catriona Tait and Diana Al-Zaidi draw the raffle with holiday winners Leszck and Remata Puklicka 

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