Birmingham City Football Club have confirmed Cure Leukaemia as their charity partner for the 2017/18 season.
The partnership was announced at Glynn Purnell’s Friday Night Kitchen at the VOX.
Purnell, a lifelong Blues fan and Cure Leukaemia Trustee, was thrilled that the Club are supporting the charity.
He said: “As a proud Brummie and Bluenose, I think that it is fantastic that Birmingham City will be supporting Cure Leukaemia.
“The work of the charity is having an impact on a global scale and it’s great to think that Birmingham is leading the fight against blood cancer.
“Birmingham City are such a generous club and I’m sure that they will do great things with Cure Leukaemia.”
The decision follows an internal review of the Club’s charity partnership and how it engages within the community.
The Club believed it was very important to find a charity that was Birmingham based and keen to support the local area.
The news is a tremendous boost to Cure Leukaemia’s £1m Appeal to fund the expansion the globally significant Centre for Clinical Haematology at the Queen Elizabeth Hospital in Birmingham.
The transformational project will double the Centre’s capacity to give blood cancer patients access to pioneering and potentially life-saving treatments for the disease. Not only will the Centre, which has already had a grant of over £2m from the GBSLEP, immediately help save more lives it will also help hasten global progress towards the eradication of all forms of blood cancer within 25 years.
In addition, Cure Leukaemia has always had strong links with the football world.
Former Wolves, Crystal Palace and England footballer Geoff Thomas is a former patient and Patron, former Aston Villa skipper Stiliyan Petrov was treated by the charity’s co-founder Professor Charlie Craddock CBE and more recently, Wolves Goalkeeper Carl Ikeme helped raise over £75,000 soon after his diagnosis
To support the charity, Blues will be getting involved in Cure Leukaemia’s wide range of events in 2018 including Glynn Purnell’s Friday Night Kitchen, Live Music Quizzes, the Brindleyplace Dragon Boat Race, Velo Birmingham and the Birmingham International Marathon
Ian Dutton, Head of Commercial added: “Having got to know the team at Cure Leukaemia, it quickly became apparent that they were an extremely proactive and hardworking charity.
“It was very important to the club that a Birmingham based charity was chosen and the amazing work Cure Leukaemia do made it an easier decision to make them one of Blues’ Official Charity Partners.
“We are thrilled to be able to support such a fantastic cause and look forward to working together to raise as much awareness and funds for the charity as possible.”
Another Blues fan who is delighted with the news is 28-year-old Elizabeth Dean.
Lizzie has Acute Myeloid Leukaemia and has been receiving treatment through a world first clinical trial, VIOLA, that she has been able to access thanks to Cure Leukaemia’s funding. She said:
“After relapsing twice I was given a few months to live, said Dean.
“However, the clinical trial I have been placed on, which was not available anywhere else in the world, has put me back into remission and given me a fresh spark of hope and potentially another chance to live.
“I love going to St Andrews and it was great to be invited to the Caraboa Cup match against Crawley Town earlier this season.
“A few months previously I wasn’t sure I would ever get the chance to go again. I hope the club and the fans get behind this amazing charity so that more people in the same position as me can have access to these treatments.”
For more details on Cure Leukaemia, please click here.