Pledge by 16th October to Big Give Challenge!

UPDATE: Matching Donation Period starts midday (12pm GMT) Friday 4th December –


Invest in ME charity was pleased to announce in August that one their projects was selected for The Big Give Christmas Challenge. The project is to fund two more intercalating medical students from the University of East Anglia Medical School to take part in medical research related to myalgic encephalomyeltis (ME).

Medical students often learn very little about the disease myalgic encephalomyelitis (ME). What they do learn is out-of-date and based on a page that is based on flawed research. This means that students leave medical training ill-prepared for understanding or treating ME. By participating in the actual biomedical research they not only learn far more about the disease but are also given the potential to find treatment or cause. This helps the student, the university and, ultimately, patient.

The charity has had great success with the two current intercalating fourth year medical students Navena Navaneetharaja and Bharat Harbham. Navena spent over three months at Cornell University in New York with Professor Maureen Hanson and Bharat has been working under the guidance of Professor Angela Vincent in Oxford.

Medical & PhD Students at IIMEC10 2015
The Next Generation at IIMEC10 May 2015

Navena and Bharat have been of great help to Daniel Vipond, the PhD student funded by Invest in ME to work on the foundation study on the gut microbiome in ME. With Fane Mensah (UCL) they were ‘The Next Generation’ taking part in a panel discussion at the 10th Invest in ME Conference (IIMEC10) in London in May.

This work underpins the next phases of the charity’s continuing project to establish a Centre of Excellence for ME and a strategic range of biomedical research into myalgic encephalomyelitis, having successfully engaged the keen interest of scientists leading in their own field to set to work on unraveling the complexities of this neglected disease. See IIME Advisory Board.

We invite you to join us in helping Invest in ME to fund two more intercalating medical students using the Big Give Christmas Challenge campaign.

The students will be attached to one of the projects being funded by the charity. They will be supervised by professors involved in the research and learn about the disease as well as perform vital roles in the research itself. This may also involve seeing patients. By intercalating in their fourth year they gain valuable insights into the disease as well as returning to their studies with more confidence and ability to educate other students about ME.

Cost of IIME intercalating medical student project: £10,000
The Big Give Champion Funds: £2,500
October Pledge Target: £2,500
December Matching Target: £5,000

The first phase is to collect pledges from supporters by 16th October.

Pledges will be matched by Big Give Champion Funds to a total of £2500.

The sum of pledges (target £2500) plus champion funds (up to £2500) will then used for a matching donation (up to £5000) period in December.

Pledgers cannot donate to the charity online during December.

To pledge a minimum of £100 to this project, please use The Big Give Christmas Challenge 2015 Pledge Form. No payment details are required at this stage.

Pledges are paid after the matching period and by 15th January.

UPDATE: £2500 target reached – thank you!

Please see Invest in ME website for full details of The Big Give Christmas Challenge. Thank you for your support!

UPDATE: At the inaugural meeting of EMERG this week, it was clear that this scheme to fund intercalating medical students is paying dividends and tentative agreement was given to place students at other UK universities.

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