We feel very privileged to have such a fabulous team of celebrity ambassadors and supporters who are committed to raising awareness of what we do. They speak about our work at public events, introduce us to new supporters and support our campaigns which increase awareness of WellChild and how we can help more children who need us.
Although we have been helping kids for over 30 years, some people are still unaware of the scope of work we do. We find it inspirational that our Patron, Ambassadors and supporters are prepared to use their time and generosity to help spread the word and inspire others to join in supporting us.
We were thrilled when Duncan very kindly agreed to become a Business Ambassador for WellChild in 2008. Ever since, Duncan has been a fabulous supporter of WellChild and like all our Ambassadors has freely given his time to attend our WellChild Awards for a number of years as well as single-handedly funding our WellChild Nurse, Melanie, in Barrow in Furness, Cumbria.
Most people know Duncan as a panellist on BBC Television's Dragons' Den. His strong opinions and sharp comments to the programme's would-be entrepreneurs have made him one of the most popular Dragons in the Den. Outside of his TV appearances, Duncan is one of the UK's most successful entrepreneurs.
Like many of our Ambassadors, Mark was inspired to become involved in WellChild after attending our Awards. Markre-visited his Strictly Come Dancing days by taking to stage with Chris Hollins and Stavros Flately for an impromptu performance at the 2010 WellChild Awards!
In line with his successful sporting history Mark hosts the annual ‘Mark Foster Golf challenge’ in aid of WellChild and has recently been part of the supporter team to attend the Marex Spectron trading day in London.
To read all about Mark's amazing career visit www.markfoster.co.uk
For many a year, Karren was known as the first woman in football for her role as Managing Director of Birmingham City Football Club and turning the Club’s fortunes around. However, more recently Karren has taken over from Margaret Mountford as an adviser to Lord Sugar on the BBC TV show The Apprentice.
Karren is one of WellChild’s longest serving Ambassadors and has been a supporter for many years.
For a more detailed account of Karren's ventures please visit her website www.karrenbrady.com
Journalist and news presenter Emily Maitlis is a keen supporter of WellChild and has recently become a WellChild Ambassador.
As an experienced presenter Emily Maitlis did a wonderful job at hosting the WellChild awards for two years in 2007 and 2008. Regardless of being very used to reporting on stories about the tough side of life and tales of heroism, hearing the stories of the courageous children who WellChild supports brought a tear to Emily’s eye.
Here she tells us why the charity is so close to her heart.
Without doubt Oliver is best known for his fantastically played role as George Weasley in the Harry Potter film series with his twin brother James. In 2012 we invited them both to present an award to two inspirational children at the WellChild awards and soon after we were pleased when Oliver agreed to become an Ambassador.
Oliver’s first event representing WellChild was at the Marex Spectron trading day with fellow supporter Mark Foster where an amazing £62,000 was raised to help us support many more sick children.
In 2007, Ian became one of our founding Ambassadors, and ever since has always been more than generous in giving up his time to attend our WellChild Awards which honour the bravery and courage of the UK’s sick children and the carers who look after them.
Ian is probably most recognised for his role as one of the professional dancers on The BBC's hit show Strictly Come Dancing. He has built up a following of dedicated fans and has become a highly respected and recognisable figure and personality in the world of dance.
We are very proud that Ian is one of our long-standing celebrity Ambassadors!!
If you would like to read more abourt Ian's career, please visit Ian Waite
Chris has been a dedicated supporter of WellChild for a number of years, attending the WellChild awards nearly every year since it began and hosting the event in 2011 on our behalf. In addition to this he was also part of the WellChild team attending the ICAP trading day with other celebrity supporters in 2008.
Probably best known for his journalism and reporting for the BBC, Chris was also crowned the winner of the Strictly Come Dancing 2009 series where he fought off tough competition. Currently, Chris can be seen as a presenter on consumer awareness programme, Watchdog.
SCOUTING FOR GIRLS (SFG)
We were over the moon when Scouting for Girls accepted our invitation to attend our 2009 WellChild Awards, so you can imagine how happy we all were when they agreed to become Ambassadors!
During the summer of 2010, the boys embarked on an original challenge of cycling from London to Brighton on children's "chopper" bikes in aid of WellChild and completed their fundraising with an acoustic concert at Komedia in Brighton. Scouting For Girls raised almost £20,000! Well done to you all.... and a huge thank you from the bottom of our hearts.
We are hearing rumours that their next fundraising event for us is titled ‘3 men in a boat’......we can’t wait to hear more soon!
More information about SFG and their news can be found at www.scoutingforgirls.com
SAM NIXON AND MARK RHODES
Better known as Sam and Mark, the presenting duo were first introduced to WellChild when they kindly agreed to become our hosts for the 2012 WellChild awards. It was agreed by all who attended that they did a fabulous job and we can’t wait to work with them both again soon on other projects.
For more information on what Sam and Mark are appearing on currently visit www.samandmark.com
Famous author Adele Parks has kindly agreed to become the latest WellChild Celebrity Ambassador.
Following her attendance at the 2011 WellChild Awards, bestselling author Adele is happy to promote and support WellChild in our work with seriously ill children and their families.
‘A brunch with Adele’ was one of the main attractions to our first Petticoat Fair held in Cheltenham this summer. Those who attended loved hearing her talk about her writing career and receiving advice from such a talented novelist.
Adele has sold one and a half million copies of her books in the UK and they have been translated into 25 different languages. She has published nine novels in nine years, all of which have been Times Top Ten bestsellers.
Sky Sport’s presenter Ed Chamberlin was asked to be a WellChild ambassador in 2012 and we were really pleased when he graciously accepted.
In September this year Ed attended the BGC Charity trading day with a team of WellChild staff where he took part in making trades and speaking to the clients on the phone – all to raise as much as possible for WellChild’s projects. We’re looking forward to working with Ed at some other events we have coming up in the future.
Leanne shot to fame in the summer of 2012 when she won the first series of The Voice UK. In the autumn of the same year she entertained the guests at the WellChild awards where she sang her debut solo single ‘Run to You.’
As one of our newest ambassadors we’re looking forward to working more with Leanne in 2013.
Laura came on board as a founding Ambassador following her appearance at our 2007 WellChild Awards and since this time she willingly gives her time to support us in many ways.
Our thanks go to Laura for being involved with many activities we have been involved with over the past few years, including hosting the England vs Algeria World Cup screening event in London when we were the beneficial charity for the England Football Team as well as attending a reception at 10 Downing Street in aid of WellChild.
Laura is well known as the female face of children’s TV channel Nickelodeon, and is currently one of the faces of the Channel 4 show ‘A Place in the Sun.’ Further information about Laura can be found at www.laurahamilton.co.uk
Gillian attended our 2010 Awards and was humbled by the bravery shown by so many of the children living with complex medical conditions. As the internationally acclaimed Holistic Nutritionist and presenter of You Are What You Eat hit Channel 4 series that took the nation by storm, Gillian most recently appeared in the 2011 series of I'm a Celebrity, Get me out of Here.
Raised in Scotland, Gillian now travels extensively giving lectures and seminars to packed audiences. Her lifelong mission is to share her information and make the world a healthier place.
Sarah was so moved the work of WellChild that she offered to become more involved in what we do; Sarah very kindly agreed to become an Ambassador and is rapidly gathering support for us across the country. Her current project for us involves collecting signed football shirts from the premiership teams to auction off and raise funds for us to help even more children throughout the UK.
As an actress, Sarah may be best known for her role as Shannon Donnelly-Lawson in Footballers Wives and its ITV2 spin-off Footballers' Wives: Extra Tim.
THE CANDLE THIEVES
Welcome to the world of the Candle Thieves – a very wonderful, weird and whimsical place. Deep thinkers can lose themselves here in gentle, poppy pleasures, and enjoy soft-hearted sentiments with sinister undertows. The band that made this world together is the brainchild of two serious songwriters, who wear big, thick-framed glasses, walk out onto the stage to the sound of the Jaws theme tune, set off bubble machines, and play glockenspiels, toy pianos, shakers and snares. They summon up the spirits of Eels, Sufjan Stevens, and the Lucksmiths in their sounds, but make wonderful songs that are utterly their own.
But who are these strange characters? They are Scott McEwan and the mysterious man who hides behind the moniker, The Glock, – two sixth form friends from Peterborough, who studied music together at college. They lost touch with each other when they left the school gates, and started to pursue the rock and roll dream. Scott McEwan became the lead singer of a rock band, while The Glock played in a Keane-like pop group that had a top 40 hit. Both have toured the world and tasted the high life, but both craved the chance to make music that was more simple and intimate.
The Candle Thieves performed at our 2010 Awards and like so many others, the courage and bravery of the children touched their hearsts and they agreed to become Ambassadors.