A 26-year-old cystic fibrosis sufferer who has had a double lung transport has been recognised for raising an incredible £60,000 for charity.
Emily Thackray won the lifetime achievement award at the Justgiving awards ceremony, held at the Emirates stadium in London.
She has raised more than £35,000 through Justgiving, and campaigns relentlessly to raise awareness about organ donation and cystic fibrosis.
She was born with Cystic Fibrosis and received a double lung transplant in 2007. She started fundraising when she was just 10-years-old. Her first event was in her back garden and she made £120.
She has since helped raise over £60,000 for various charities, including the Cystic Fibrosis Trust and the charity which she co-founded, Live Life Then Give Life.
Emily was diagnosed with CF at birth, and immediately commenced the daily regime of treatments and medications to keep her lungs as healthy as possible. However by the time she was 20, her lungs were so badly damaged she was told she needed a double lung transplant in order to survive. Desperately ill and dependent on oxygen 24 hours a day, she waited for 22 months before receiving her life-saving transplant.
During that time, Emily she never stopped campaigning and in 2006 did her biggest fundraiser to date, where she left her hospital bed to take part in a 5K challenge, using a wheelchair and oxygen to help her complete the course and raising over £20,000.
She said: “I love fundraising; it gives me such a buzz knowing that I’m doing something proactive for causes I care so much about. I was absolutely stunned to win at the Justgiving awards last night and completely overwhelmed. I’m hugely grateful to all those who continue to support me in my fight to raise awareness and funds for both Cystic Fibrosis and Organ Donation.”
Matt Coyne, Vice-chairman of Live Life Then Give Life said: “I was wondering how someone so young could receive a Life Time Achievement award. I believe anyone that knows her, has listened to one of her talks or chatted to her in our online community, would be able to answer that question for me with ease. She is an inspiration to so many people and is living proof of the benefits of signing the organ donor register. I'm honored to be Emily's Vice Chair for the Charity and so proud that she won this wonderful award.”
You can sign the organ donor register online at www.lltgl.org.uk or by phoning NHSBT on 0300 123 23 23.