Ipswich: Year of fundraising pays off for charities

SEVEN good causes around the town were given a fantastic boost thanks to a year of hard work.

Former mayor and now deputy mayor John Le Grys presented cheques to seven groups from the money raised during his time as Ipswich mayor.

Cllr Le Grys said: “When you become mayor, you are expected to – and it’s a great pleasure to – raise money for local charities.

“Right at the outset, I think one of the most important charities is the Umbrella Trust, all run out of the Community Resource Centre, and I felt that had to be supported. Then I asked other groups to bid, to tell me what they wanted money for.”

Cllr Le Grys raised �16,070.33 during his time as mayor – the most raised for the last five years.

The Brooke’s Wish To Walk appeal received some of the funds.

Six-year-old Brooke Lawrance, from Morland Road, was diagnosed with cerebral palsy as a baby and has never been able to walk.

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Her family need to raise �70,000 to pay for a life-changing operation in America, after being turned down by a hospital in Bristol.

Cllr Le Grys said: “She’s an inspiration. I wasn’t going to support them until Bristol changed their mind about doing the operation. So the only option now is to go to the States. They were virtually there and now they’ve got to double it.”

The Papworth Trust received �945 for a specific project, disability charity Out and About received funding for a new resource hut and community group ActivLives got funds for a new project in Westgate Ward.

The Refugee Support Forum got a share and Islamic charity Jimas received funds to turn St Michael’s Church into a community centre.

Cllr Le Grys said: “Jimas, probably more than any other project, better encompasses what I’m working to achieve. It’s multi-racial, it’s multi-faith, it ticks all the boxes and he (chief executive Manwar Ali) is an inspiration.”