January Updates

Big thanks to all involved in a superb start to the year and planning ways to support Invest in ME Research in the year ahead. Our patient-driven community campaign in support of this volunteer-run charity is totally inclusive of all ages and levels of severity of the illness Myalgic Encephalomyelitis (ME) and we really appreciate all the various ways you choose to support the progressive work of this small charity’s big cause.

With her writer’s hat firmly in place, Stacy Hart published her Friday column in the Watford Observer on New Year’s Day, and including this message from Invest in ME ..

French Author Voltaire  once wrote that optimism is the madness of insisting that all is well when we are miserable.

Yet Invest in ME (IiME) is optimistic that we and our big hearted supporters can build on our achievements from the past year, and all the work over the past ten years, and consolidate the foundation of research that we have which can finally treat myalgic encephalomyelitis (ME) and give people their lives back.

We are pleased to see that more and more ME is being talked about outside the usual ME circles – and in a positive way too.

Patients themselves are driving change.

In 2016 Invest in ME will focus on European collaboration and the establishment of a centre of excellence – and with just a little more support we can make this a reality.

We look forward to Dr Ian Gibson’s book – ‘Science, Politics and ME’.
In 2016 we hold the eleventh public International ME Conference and the sixth two-day International ME Research Colloquium – both in London in June.

At the time when the  NHS is being stretched to its limits it is even more important than before that ME patients can take part in shaping their own future.

Things won’t change overnight but good foundations are being built with the help of Invest in ME supporters who are selfless and resilient.

If optimism is madness then for 2016 we choose madness, we choose optimism, we choose progress.

We welcome 2016 and promise to work for the benefit of patients.

Bring it on.   Happy New Year to everyone.

As a music artist, Stacy goes by the name of Mama Chill. She interviewed fellow musician Skopje in January, reprinted here on our blog with their kind permission.

Vyvyan Weltiner, of Galderma in Clarendon Road, Watford, contacted Stacy to say that, having followed her Watford Observer column, they have chosen Invest in ME, along with The MS Society, to each receive a £750 donation from selling their old office equipment.

Tony Bradstock posted that the charity collection box at Coffee Cloud at Dickens Heath in Solihull had been emptied and that the money would be on its way to Invest in ME.

Joan McParland announced that 73 Northern Ireland branches of Boots Pharmacy would be receiving the Invest in ME Matchstick Campaign brochures in an information pack. You can read more in our January update on the Matchstick Campaign.

Sinéad Kearns decided to do Dry January for Invest in ME to show support for the upcoming Kilimnajaro Climb being done by Richard Pughe and Amanda Kayes in March. That’s not all they have planned for the year ahead, so watch this space for more news.

It’s really lovely to see supporters following on their support of Invest in ME with more events for 2016, as well as welcoming newcomers to the cause.

Walk for ME 2016 was launched in preparation for ME Awareness Week in May, and is again supporting Invest in ME. A few fundraising pages have been set up already, such as by Rachel Green & Chris, Jacqui Redmond, and Ellan Brown.

Having done a Reservoir Walk for ME last year, Amanda Buckley is doing a sponsored swim with her friend Rachael in May.

After their cycle ride for Invest in ME last year, Ash & Rob are doing a triathlon in May.

Ian Potter is once again doing a half-marathon along Hadrian’s Wall for Invest in ME, and for Sheffield Hospitals Charity and The Cystic Fibrosis Trust.

Mike Sutton is doing a Long Walk along the Camino de Santiago for Invest in ME as his friend Joel has ME. He raised an amazing £1000 in the first 24 hours of setting up his fundraising page, and matched that with another £1000. His new target is £3000. He wrote on his blog, “To say I’m blown away is an understatement – I was thrilled to tears – sobbing as I read the messages of support and having my faith in humanity rekindled to a blaze. Thank you so very much.”

Jo Smith has set herself a target to raise £500 for Invest in ME in 2016 by organising various things throughout the year and has set up a fundraising page.

Young Makayla Nunn has her sights set on raising yet more awareness and funds for Invest in ME, building on from her tremendous efforts and enthusiasm last year.

If you or anyone you know collects their loose change and would like to use it to support Invest in ME, Sue Page has extended ‘Small Change to Change ME’ for another year, on JustGiving and Facebook.

We updated our page on The Big Sleep for ME for May Awareness 2016.

28 EU Marathon Man, Mike Harley, posted his January Update, including a big shout to Tony Bradstock for creating a widely appealing promo picture, and for the 11th Invest in ME Conference (IIMEC11) in June 2016.

Alison Orr invited others to join her in setting up a shop on Phoenix Trading with profits to Invest in ME. Buying quality cards & stationery from her shop Cards for Invest in ME is a nice and easy way to generate donations to the charity at any time of the year.

Becca Hams & Ali Head got busy organising Secret Valentine 2016. The closing date is 2nd February, so don’t delay if you’d like to take part. Never forgetting our furry, feathered or scaly friends, this year there is also a Secret Valentine for Pets!

Looking for a Valentine’s gift for a loved one or to treat yourself?
Lynne Allan sells lovely hand-crafted jewellery online from her shop ME2UDezignz on Etsy, with donations to Invest in ME.

Click here for other ways to generate donations at no extra cost to you.

Spreadshirt has an offer of free delivery on orders of 2 or more items, ending 3rd February, using the coupon code: Coupon Code: 2LOVE

Seller profit from the whole range of products in all our shops below go directly to Invest in ME Research.

Let’s Do It for ME – 
http://shop.spreadshirt.co.uk/ldifme

Let’s Do It for ME Design Your Own – 
http://designerme.spreadshirt.co.uk

Invest in ME Charity logo products – 
http://653855.spreadshirt.co.uk

Make ME / Hug ME – 
http://makemecrafts.spreadshirt.co.uk

The Big Sleep for ME – 
http://thebigsleepforme.spreadshirt.co.uk

Stacy Hart is generously hosting another of her legendary competitions on our Facebook page, just for fun and to help raise awareness of our cause for Invest in ME.
Closes 3rd February.

Thank you for the direct donations in January to our crowdfunding for the Invest in ME Research on the role of the Gut Microbiome and B-cells/Rituximab.

Phew, what a start to the year!
Have we missed anything out?
Would you like us to feature your plans for 2016 or write a guest post for our blog?
Let us know in the comments or email us at fundraising4me@gmail.com or contact the charity Invest in ME (Research) directly at info@investinme.org
Enter your email address below to receive our blog updates direct to your inbox.
Thanks so much for your support. Let’s make it a fabulous February!

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(Click here for our review of 2015)

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