Searching for a charity champion

Ian Lavery wins the Wansbeck seat at the Northumberland General Election count 2017
Ian Lavery wins the Wansbeck seat at the Northumberland General Election count 2017

Let’s together find our Wansbeck Charity Champion.

The search is on to find a charity champion of Britain, and how I would love that to be someone from our Wansbeck constituency because I am sure we will not be short of worthy contenders.

The national campaign is searching for someone who has shown extraordinary commitment through charitable work and who has the potential to become the UKs face of the global #givingtuesday campaign.

It’s a campaign that now runs in more than 70 countries and is backed in the UK by celebrities such as Stephen Fry, JK Rowling, Emma Watson, Gary Lineker, Peter Andre and David Tennant, as well as by organisations and companies including Cancer Research UK, Sue Ryder, Movember, Sainsbury’s, BT, Facebook and ASOS Foundation.

This year it is being led by the Charities Aid Foundation and will take place on Tuesday, November 28, which by no coincidence follows Black Friday, the busiest shopping day of the year, and Cyber Monday when millions of pounds will be spent by online shoppers in a single day.

Last year #givingtuesday set a Guinness World Record for the most online donations in 24 hours when people gave more than £38million to good causes globally. More than £6,000 was pledged every minute to UK charities.

But I would like to see the campaign become more than just giving money to charity .

It should be a rallying call to encourage even more people to think about committing to what it calls ‘doing good stuff for good causes’, which is something so many people are already familiar with in this part of the world.

If we stop and think about it, we all know people living and working in our constituency who go above and beyond the call of duty to support others less well off or more in need than they are.

People tirelessly devote so much time and energy to working on behalf of others, whether that be by raising money, organising events or offering a helping hand to those who need it most.

I could name so many myself — people I have met as I have been going about my constituency duties when I have seen the contributions they selflessly make to ensuring someone’s life is made just that little bit better.

However, I would like everyone to share in #givingtuesday by launching our own search for a Wansbeck Charity Champion from among the best and most dedicated of our residents, who embody our great local traditions of charitable work.

The search will also be a celebration of all the good work done by so many local people of all ages, who between them make such a valuable and important contribution to our daily life.

If you know someone you would like to nominate as my Wansbeck Charity Champion you can do so at http://www.ianlavery.org.uk/ian_s_charity_champion

Nominations will be open until October 31. Once we receive your nominations you will have the chance to vote for the person of your choice.

A public vote will take place between November 1 and November 5, and I would encourage you to get your family and friends to vote.

The winner will be announced on Tuesday, November 7, when I will also put their name forward to the national campaign to find the UKs ultimate charity champion, who will be given the opportunity to share their story to inspire others, as well as serve as an ambassador for #givingtuesday.

The national winner will be someone who truly stands out from the crowd and can represent Britain on the global charity stage. Wouldn’t that be great if that was someone from one of our communities right here in Wansbeck?

So let me urge you please to get your entries in now for our Wansbeck Charity Champion.