Back in 1971 a little boy was born, Anthony Nolan, who was diagnosed with a condition called Wiskott Aldrich for which the only know cure was a bone marrow transplant. Unfortunately back then there was no register of donors and despite tireless campaigning by his mother, Shirley, little Anthony died in 1979.
Since then the Trust has grown into a worldwide charity connecting patients with donors and saving a great many lives. I myself have been on the register for many years and began fund-raising for the Trust back before Anthony Died. Over the years I've done such diverse activities as carol-singing and sky-diving.
Just recently I was reminded of their continued hard work when my own GP refused to take blood samples for advanced tissue-typing, resulting in a specialist nurse having to undertake a 300 mile round-trip in order to do so.
As I edge closer to 50 years of age I recognise I'm no longer fit enough to engage in the more physical activities of fund-raising and so thought something more cerebral might be in order.
So, I'm giving up alcohol for the month of November.
As my many family and friend will testify, I'm very partial to a nice pint of Guinness stout, not to mention the occaisonal cheeky glass of wine. With this in mind I've set my target to be alcohol-free for the entire month of November. Nothing stronger than mouth-wash will pass my lips.
To help galvanise my resolve and keep me on the straight and narrow I'm inviting you all to donate whatever you can spare, however small an amount, to spur me on to midnight, 30 November 2013 when it will be my great pleasure to raise a glass to you all.
Please give what you can. You know this isn't going to be easy for me and it's only with your support that I'll be able to pull it off.
I'm going to set the ball rolling with a pledge of £100 pounds of my own money.