College To Raise Funds For Eye Cancer Charity

Tue, 19/06/2001 - 01:00

EDC Hairdressing lecturer Alison Scattergood who had childhood eye cancer - with her sister Sharon Smith.

A north east college is busy planning a number of 25-themed activities to help a childhood eye cancer charity celebrate its 25th anniversary.

East Durham College, in Peterlee County Durham, is organising a number of fundraising activities to help raise money for the Childhood Eye Cancer Trust (CHECT).

CHECT is the only charity dedicated to providing support to children and families in the UK who have been affected by retinoblastoma (Rb), a rapidly developing cancer that affects the cells of the retina.

The trust is celebrating, throughout 2012, its 25 years of raising awareness of eye cancer, supporting those affected by it and funding research into the disease. And to mark the occasion CHECT has set itself the challenging task of raising £250,000 during the year.

College lecturer Alison Scattergood, aged 39 from Peterlee, was herself diagnosed with the rare eye cancer retinoblastoma at six weeks old. She was successfully treated for the condition at the Sunderland Eye Infirmary.

The barbering lecturer, who has worked at East Durham College for the last seven years, said: “This is a charity very dear to my heart. Obviously I was personally affected by the disease and it also put a lot of stress on to my parents too.

“Growing up I was also very conscious that it could have affected my own children and that’s one of the main reasons I’m keen to keep involved with the charity, to help raise awareness amongst new parents on how to spot the condition. It’s vital to catch it as early as possible as it can be life threatening.

“I have been overwhelmed by the response from students and staff who want to get involved. We are going to run a number of fundraising activities starting on Monday 16th April and running all that week, which is why we have decided to call it CHECT Week at EDC.”

Joy Felgate, chief executive at the trust, welcomed the College’s fundraising drive and said: “It is wonderful to have such fantastic support from the staff and students at East Durham College.

“The events they are running will go a long way, not only to helping us educate people about the signs and symptoms of eye cancer in children, but also to help us provide vital support to those families who have been affected by it.

“We are extremely grateful to Alison and her colleagues for taking up the 25 challenge.”

As part of the activities the Level 2 and 3 barbering students will be giving away 25 free haircuts and the Level 3 hairdressers will offer 25 conditioning treatments with scalp massage, with their clients being asked to make a donation to the charity.

The Level 2 and 3 Beauty therapy students will also take part offering 25 eyebrow waxing treatments and 25 nail painting treatments.

Sports lecturer Martin Johns is organising a 25-mile sponsored bike ride setting off from the College on Wednesday 18th April. (Leaving college late morning, exact time to be confirmed.

The Catering team plan to hold a raffle offering a free meal at the College restaurant, Scene1, whilst the Construction Department plan to wash 25 cars.

Personal learning coach Liz Peary is also going to bake 25 homemade pasties and sell them for £1.25.

“The week will be rounded off with a Friday night celebratory staff trip to Durham taking in 25 pubs and of course we plan to get through at least 25 pints between us all,” Alison added.

If you would like to find more about the signs of eye cancer, or make a donation to CHECT, please visit