Association supporters recognised in Birthday Honours
Inspirational fundraiser Richard Pollins who walked 40km around London on artificial legs, has been awarded a British Empire Medal in the delayed Queen’s Birthday 2020 Honours List, marking his ‘services to the Motor Neurone Disease Association’.
Richard raised almost £70,000 for the Association during his four day journey, undertaken as part of his 40th birthday celebrations.
His incredible fundraising feat, which saw him visiting landmarks in the capital with special personal meaning, was inspired by his Mum who is living with motor neurone disease (MND).
Richard, who was born without legs, said:
“There were fears I’d never be able to walk. There are many reasons why, over the last 40 years I have been able to go from proving those fears unfounded to now taking on this challenge. Most of those reasons are down to my mum. She made everything happen and the impossible possible.”
Richard was joined on various stages of his walk by friends, family and representatives of the MND Association – and his mum was on hand to welcome him across the finish line, along with television cameras, further boosting awareness for the charity.
He will be presented with his British Empire Medal at a special ceremony in the future.
MND Association’s Director of External Affairs Chris James said:
“I was honoured to join Richard during his 40km walk around London and humbled to see the effort he put in both to complete the challenge and to raise an incredible amount of money for the Association. Everyone at the MND Association is thrilled to see his contribution to our work celebrated in such a public way.”
And Richard wasn’t the only person honoured by Her Majesty, in the Honours List. Also receiving a British Empire Medal are Paul Jameson and Susan Graham.
Paul, a member of the Association’s West Surrey branch, is recognised ‘for charitable services to people with motor neurone disease’. Area Support Co-ordinator Lisa Burnard said:
“Paul is a fantastic fundraiser, a really lovely man and we’re so delighted for him. He has just joined the committee of the West Surrey branch of the MND Association. Paul is very active and is well known across Surrey for his fundraising.”
Susan is recognised ‘for services to people with motor neurone disease in the Asian community’. Her dedication to the cause was inspired by her sister Jaspal who died of MND and in whose name she founded the charity Jaspal’s Voice.
The Association’s Director of Engagement Chris Wade said:
“Susan has used her own lived experience of MND to not only raise money and awareness but also to give people with MND a voice through her work on communication devices.”