Cancer patient raises over £6,000 for hospital charity

A bowel cancer patient returned to the QE Hospital in Gateshead to thank everyone for his care with a fantastic donation of £6,177.

Derek Beasley, from Dunston, was diagnosed with stage four bowel cancer last year shortly after a routine visit to his GP. After undergoing lifesaving surgery at the Peter Smith Surgery Centre at the QE, Derek is now currently undergoing chemotherapy.

To help take his mind off his diagnosis, Derek decided to focus on raising money for QE Charitable Funds. He organised a hugely successful charity night at the Holmeside Hall Social Club in Dunston, which was sponsored by Tom Robson from Roflow. The night had 260 people attending and raised a staggering £2,642.

Derek didn’t stop there and decided to make an application to Santander for match funding and was awarded a grant of £2,500.

A Lay Church Minister and active in his community, Derek spoke to local community group Lesley’s Lovelies about his fundraising. The group was set up back in 2004 in memory of a beloved friend who sadly passed away from Bowel Cancer. To help support Derek’s fundraising, Leslies Lovelies held an incredibly popular Christmas Garden Illuminations event and raised a further £1035.

QE Charitable Funds is a registered charity set up to hold and manage charitable money given to the QE Hospital. The charity has more than 40 charitable funds covering wards and departments across the hospital, which means that fundraisers can identify exactly which part of the hospital they would like to support and can guarantee that every single penny goes to that area.

All money raised by Derek and Leslies Lovelies will all go to patients requiring Lower GI and Stoma (bowel) care.

Derek said: “A cancer diagnosis can be a terrifying experience but I wanted to turn my experience into something positive so decided to fundraise for QE Charitable Funds. Fundraising has really lifted my spirits and given me the incentive and motivation to focus my energy into something else. I’m absolutely delighted with how much we have raised and it is so gratifying to think it will be used to help patients and their families in the hospital.” 

Melanie Armstrong, communications and charitable funds manager, added:  “We would like to thank Derek and Lesley’s Lovelies for fundraising for us, as well as the kind donation from Santander. All of their efforts will make a huge difference to the lives of patients and their families being treated at the Queen Elizabeth. We’re all very grateful for their support.”