Sunshine and Showers

Sunshine and Showers

max temp: 9°C

min temp: 4°C


Why I gave up presents for my 21st birthday

PUBLISHED: 16:58 01 August 2018 | UPDATED: 16:58 01 August 2018

Katie Lewis. Picture: COURTESY OF EACH

Katie Lewis. Picture: COURTESY OF EACH


Most people receive watches, expensive champagne or even cars for their 21st birthday.

However veterinary nursing student Katie Lewis decided to give up dream gifts for her landmark birthday - so she could give money to charity instead.

Katie, who works at Ipswich Town Football Club on matchdays, was inspired to make the big donation by seeing the work that East Anglia’s Children’s Hospices (EACH) in the region.

EACH cares for children with life-threatening conditions across Cambridgeshire, Essex, Norfolk and Suffolk, whilst offering support to their families.

Katie, who is from Ipswich, studies at Nottingham Trent University and is working at Southfields Veterinary Specialists in Laindon, Essex, admits that she is “quite a hard person to buy for”.

She added: “My mum is quite good at suprises so I might have got a trip away somewhere but I decided that there wasn’t anything I really needed or particularly wanted to get this year, so I thought I would ask for sponsorship donations.”

As a result she decided to do a sponsored triathlon to support EACH - raising about £850 so far, well above her original £500 target.

“I got so much support from my friends and family as well as complete strangers as I was going round,” she said of the event at Alton Water, which consisted of a 750m swim, a 21km bike ride and a 4.5km run.

“I even got sponsored whilst I was running and swimming.”

Katie continued: “A man came up to me and said that his son had been cared for at the hospice. He gave me cash on the spot.”

Katie chose to support EACH because of the incredible work it does supporting terminally ill children but also because it is a local charity.

“EACH provide free care which costs £16,000 a day,” she said.

“They really rely on donations so I decided that they could do with my help to allow them to continue their incredible work.

“I think I noticed them more beacause they are local and I see more online about them compared to other charities.”

She plans to do a similar challenge to raise more money for EACH next year.”

To donate to Ms Lewis’ fundraising efforts, visit

It is a swanky diner which brings a touch of American culture to the streets of Ipswich.

A 16-year-old suffered life-threatening injuries after being stabbed in the car park of a McDonald’s restaurant in Ipswich during a violent fight in front of shocked members of the public, it has been alleged.

An ex-Ipswich Town player who worked with asbestos before becoming a professional footballer died of industrial disease, an inquest heard.

An Ipswich man who drove with no headlights after drinking eight cans of lager at a barbecue has been handed a suspended jail sentence.

Have you started writing your Christmas cards and packing up parcels yet, or haven’t you even started to think about it yet? Either way, you won’t want to miss the last posting dates.

Fears have been raised that targeting drug dealing hotspots in Ipswich might simply be moving the problem onto different streets and neighbourhoods.

Black Friday bargains are already appearing in shops and online - but how can you avoid falling for scams and bogus offers

Author and screenwriter Anthony Horowitz visited Woodbridge to give a talk at Seckford Hall about his life and works. We caught up with him to talk about his home in Orford, his love for Suffolk and how he plans to spend eternity in the county.

Ipswich Citizens Advice revealed the shocking case of the mother, who had depression and anxiety after giving birth, in a bid to call for new laws to crack down on debt collectors who flout the rules.

Officers stopped a vehicle with a faulty light to discover a child in a car seat not secured by a seatbelt.

Most read

Show Job Lists

Topic pages

Newsletter Sign Up

Ipswich Star daily newsletter
Sign up to receive our regular email newsletter

Our Privacy Policy

MyDate24 MyPhotos24