Banquet support for skin disorder

Hauxley hole filling, photo by Duncan Hutt
Hauxley hole filling, photo by Duncan Hutt

MORPETH Lions have held two charity evenings at the Mulan restaurant in Morpeth in aid of the charity Debra.

Debra is for ‘people whose skin does not work’ due to a condition called Epidermolysis Bullosa, or EB.

Debra is the chosen charity of this year’s Lions President Geoff Bushell.

The events were supported by Lions and their friends, including Morpeth Mayor Joan Tebbutt and fellow councillors, Northumberland County Blind Association and Ponteland and Alnwick Lions Clubs.

Guests enjoyed a tasty Chinese banquet followed by a short talk by David Watson, whose daughter Rebecca has EB.

David explained that when a child is born with EB the proteins which normally hold the skin together do not function.

This means that the skin is so fragile that any small knock or rub, or even a hug, can cause agonising blistering, tearing and permanent damage. EB can also affect internal organs.

Currently there is no cure, though in milder cases children can grow out of EB in their teenage years. For others with EB there is hope with stem cell research, but at present EB can be life-threatening

Dave’s daughter has the milder form of EB, but the blisters still need treating an hour in the morning and an hour in the evening every day.

Dave is an active fund-raiser for Debra and the specialist hospitals dealing with EB. To date he has run three marathons, which he jokes is not bad for a ‘big lad’.

Lion President Geoff was very moved when he found out about EB and had no hesitation in nominating Debra as his chosen charity. Geoff was delighted when the two evenings raised £1,000 for Debra.

He said “I have to give heartfelt thanks to all those supporting the two events and, of course to Stuart and Janice and the staff at Mulan, without whom this would have not been possible.”