Donor supports iMRI appeal in memory of wife

Date: 
Friday 08 March 2019

A £4MILLION appeal to fund a vital piece of equipment for children facing life-threatening conditions will be given a six-figure boost next week….and it’s odds-on to be substantially more.

Betfred boss Fred Done will donate all profits from over-the-counter bets made on Tuesday, 12th March in his 1,630 betting shops to the iMRI Appeal.

The date is the first day of the world-famous Cheltenham Festival which is one of the busiest days in the horse racing calendar. Plus there’s some huge matches in the Champions League including Manchester City hosting Schalke on the 12th March.

The appeal, which will fund state-of-the-art intra-operative Magnetic Resonance Imaging (iMRI) equipment, will be used to help children from across the North West region being treated for debilitating and life-threatening conditions such as brain tumours, traumatic brain injuries and problems with the central nervous system and epilepsy.

The appeal particularly resonated with family man Fred, aged 75, as he lost his wife Mo last year after she was diagnosed with a brain tumour.

Betfred boss Fred Done said: “It is humbling that I’m in a position to help with this appeal for much-needed equipment.

“From my own sad experience, I know how important it is to have world-class equipment available to help save the lives of your loved ones. I feel privileged that I can help … and I do hope the best scanner money can buy will end up saving the lives of seriously ill children brought to Manchester from all over the country.”  

Fred’s huge donation will be underwritten to the sum of £100,000. This means the appeal will receive at least £100,000, but the figure could be significantly higher – depending on results in the 1,630 betting shops on day one of the Cheltenham Festival.

The day’s profits will provide a major, much-needed boost to buy the iMRI scanner which will be based at Royal Manchester Children’s Hospital and will transform brain surgery for some of the 270,000 children who are treated there each year.

The iMRI will allow for surgeons to scan a child during the operation itself, while they are still in a safe, sterile environment.

Currently patients can wait days after a procedure until they are well enough for another scan, this can be an agonising and stressful time for young patients and their families. The iMRI will mean children better outcomes for patients with more accurate surgeries, fewer surgeries and reduced risk of infections

Maurice Watkins CBE, Chairman of Charities at the hospital, said: “We’re incredibly grateful to Fred Done for committing to making a difference to this life saving and life changing Appeal.

“We appreciate how special it is when a donor has a personal reason for reaching out and making a difference in this way. We feel very privileged that Fred Done has chosen to support the iMRI Scanner Appeal.”

The iMRI Scanner Appeal was launched in June 2018.

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