MHF proud to support #RAREfest18 by Cambridge Rare Disease Network spotlighting rare conditions

It’s 2018 and rare diseases are still not being consistently diagnosed, treated and supported effectively. Conceived by the Cambridge Rare Disease Network (CRDN), RAREfest18 takes place on 30 Nov & 1 Dec at The Guildhall in Cambridge. The aim is to spotlight some of the successes and innovative solutions that are striving to address this imbalance – the event is free to attend.

It is hoped that the festival will raise awareness of rare conditions and bring together many stakeholders from across the rare disease community alongside the general public from across Cambridgeshire and beyond.

Together with a number of other rare speakers, our CEO Michael McGrath will be speaking at the Guildhall on Fri 30 Nov about his own journey of diagnosis, his polar motivations and the precious commodity of life experiences.

The exhibition on Sat 1 Dec will showcase cutting edge research, science, technologies, products and solutions alongside best examples of medical services, support networks and powerful patient stories. The exhibition aims to demonstrate and celebrate the breadth of excellence in this field, in Cambridge and beyond.

The Muscle Help Foundation is delighted to announce that it will have a presence as an exhibitor and as such, we would like to encourage members of the public, supporters, donors, friends of the charity and organisations with an interest to come along and meet some of our Ambassadors, as well as some of our long-standing volunteers and our CEO to learn more about the charity’s work and impact but also hear some exciting news!

RAREsolutions Poster Competition (with a conscience)

In addition, we’re also thrilled to announce the support of one of our Ambassadors, Vivek Gohil, who has agreed to help the poster competition with a conscience take off!

Designed to educate, engage and empower:

  • It will break down myths about rare disease
  • It will teach you about science
  • You will meet RAREpeople
  • You will see how technology and engineering can make things possible

Check out Vivek’s RAREsolutions challenge film below:

The Muscle Help Foundation charity is proud to be supporting the Cambridge Rare Disease Network and RAREfest18.

For more info, go to: http://camraredisease.org/rarefest/

Twitter: @camraredisease

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/CambridgeRareDisease

  

  

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WOW! Award presented to Sonali Kumarakulsinghe by MHF Charity Trustee Board for invaluable contribution

The Muscle Help Foundation is delighted to nominate Sonali Kumarakulsinghe for a WOW! Award for her outstanding work, professional guidance and consistent advice since the charity was conceived 15 years ago.

The charity’s Trustee Board wish to show their gratitude for the many years of support and as such, have unanimously endorsed this WOW! Award in recognising her invaluable contribution, integrity and commitment. The Award was presented to Sonali (pictured below) by the Trustee Board on Thursday 4th October 2018 at Beales Hotel in Hatfield, Hertfordshire.

MHF’s CEO, Michael McGrath commented:

“The charity has a special partnership with The WOW! Awards. It’s a scheme that enables organisations to recognise individuals that provide exceptional value to a consistently high standard, people that go above and beyond! When the Muscle Help Foundation wants to say “thank you” – the WOW! Awards provide a great way for us to do this.

When for example suppliers to our Muscle Dream activities and/or partners deliver outstanding service on behalf of the charity and ‘our’ expectations are blown away, we like to nominate an individual or sometimes a team of people for a WOW! Award.

In Sonali’s case, I cannot think of anyone more deserving! She has and continues to be an invaluable support to the charity. Just saying thank you sometimes feels rather inadequate, so it was felt that a WOW! Award would be wholly appropriate.”

Since March 2015, the charity has made six WOW! Award nominations.

Click HERE to read Sonali’s full nomination and to see who else has received a WOW! Award.

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Charity CEO honoured by University of Hertfordshire with an Honorary Doctorate urges graduates to discover their purpose

The Muscle Help Foundation’s CEO Michael McGrath has been awarded an Honorary Doctorate from the University of Hertfordshire in recognition of his motivational and inspirational work for persons with disability.

Described as one of the most influential disabled people in Britain, Michael McGrath (pictured below, left, with University of Hertfordshire Vice-Chancellor Quintin McKellar, right) was awarded a Doctor of Arts at a ceremony on Monday 3rd September 2018, held at St Albans Abbey, Hertfordshire.

Michael McGrath, the Muscle Help Foundation’s CEO said:

“I am incredibly humbled to receive this honorary doctorate from the University of Hertfordshire. Through the work of my charity and as a speaker, my disability has effectively become a passport for purpose, compassion and hope.

My message to today’s Computer Science graduates and young people across the country is simply this: with today’s world of algorithms, artificial intelligence (AI) and the rapid advancement of technology, the discovery of your purpose is vital. Fundamentally, this is about how you contribute in giving that most precious of commodities, your time, to others; this is about embracing the ethic of reciprocity that states ‘treat others as you would like to be treated yourself’ and finally, this is about allowing the virtues of compassion, generosity and kindness to rise up as your personal and professional lives unfold.

It is these virtues as opposed to today or tomorrow’s technologies that lie at the centre of our humanity, what continues to motivate and ultimately what gives our lives meaning.”

Michael, who lives near Hertford, faced head-on the challenge of being diagnosed with muscular dystrophy at the age of eighteen and became the first disabled person to lead successful expeditions to both the North and South Poles – the North Pole in April 2002 and the South Pole in January 2004.

Since then, Michael has become the driving force behind the Hertfordshire-based charity which helps children and young people with muscular dystrophy to realise their cherished ambitions – experiences in the UK called ‘Muscle Dreams’ that amongst other benefits improves beneficiary confidence, uplifts self-esteem and gives young people a voice.

The charity is a three-times winner of the ‘Inspiring Hertfordshire’ Award for Best Social Enterprise of the Year.

Fay Sharpe, Chair of the Board of Trustees for the charity commented:

“Many congratulations to Michael McGrath, our Founder and CEO, on behalf of the Board and my fellow Trustees. We are delighted that he has been awarded an Honorary Doctor of Arts (Hon DArt) from the University of Hertfordshire, in recognition of his motivational and inspirational work in the field of disability. He was invested on Monday 3rd September 2018 at St Albans Cathedral by Professor Quintin McKellar CBE, the University’s Vice Chancellor” 

  

Michael is a recognised motivational business speaker and has been widely acknowledged for his achievements and his work. Among other recognitions he has received, for the last three years he has featured in the Power 100 for Britain’s most influential people with a disability and in 2016 he received the Inspiring Communicator National Award.

This news item was covered by the publications below; click the logos below for more info.

       

     

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Fearless Muscle Warriors raise >£5,000 for charity in 2018 Superhero Tri Challenge

Multi award-winning family charity, the Muscle Help Foundation, is thrilled to announce that three teams of fundraisers successfully completed a Superhero Tri, raising more than £5,000 for the charity’s Muscle Dreams activities.

The Muscle Warriors, including the charity’s very own CEO and founder Michael McGrath, gathered on Dorney Lake on August 18th for the second annual Superhero Tri, where they completed a 400m swim, 10km cycle and 2.5km run.

In what was one of his biggest physical challenges since becoming the first disabled person to reach the North and South Poles, McGrath completed the triathlon with the help of former Team GB rower Toby Garbett and charity volunteers George Harris and Jake Kanter.

McGrath, who himself lives with MD and is a full-time powerchair user, was slowly lifted into a dinghy and stabilised by his son-in-law Jake Kanter who remained with him.  Toby and George swam their hearts out, pulling Michael and Jake the required 400m swim distance. After the transition, Michael was then cycled 10km on a Quest 88 Draisin Bliss platform bike. He completed the final leg of the challenge in his manual wheelchair, crossing the finish line with members of the other two teams competing for the charity on the day.

They included a group called ‘Muscle Dream Team‘ led by MHF Ambassador Leah Booth accompanied by Steve Torricelli, his son Dan and service provider and charity volunteer Dawn-Louise Kerr.  The final group ‘Team Limitless’ comprised Niamh Duffy, Elouise Mullen, Jake Weldon and Sarah Neads from Limitless Travel, whose CEO Angus Drummond has Limb Girdle Muscular Dystrophy (LGMD 2A), coincidentally exactly the same genetic type of MD as the charity’s CEO.

The teams raised their voices and their arms in many a Muscle Warrior rallying cry and salute, which has become a visible symbol of hope, courage, strength and unity for all those with Muscular Dystrophy around the UK.  Channel 4 presenter Clare Balding (pictured below left with some of the team members), Paralympic legend Jonnie Peacock (pictured below with MHF Ambassador and team member Leah Booth), British wheelchair basketball player Freya Levy and ‘Last Leg’ presenter Adam Hills met team members, all flexing their sporting muscles in support of the charity.

  

All three teams smashed their targets of raising £657: a significant number, as 657 is the total number of muscles in the human body and also the charity’s Muscle Dream goal.  As of August this year, 281 Muscle Dreams have been fulfilled, leaving 376 to go before the magical 657 is achieved. The £5000 raised will go towards funding up to four more Muscle Dreams.

The charity’s CEO Michael McGrath said: “This is what happens when you put an Olympian, an ex-army chap, a journalist and a polar adventurer together! It was truly a special day and wonderful to see so many participants and spectators, of all abilities, getting involved and having fun.”

“The Superhero Tri organisers, volunteers and sidekicks should all take a big bow. A special shout-out to event founder Sophia Warner for her inclusive vision which enabled me to believe. So I did… and to think that over £5000 has been raised for the charity. We’re now going to be able to change some more lives and give hope to some incredibly deserving young people on our Muscle Dreams wait-list.”

“Our thoughts have now turned to next year’s Superhero Tri event! The charity is looking to recruit more teams, so if you would like to get involved and can commit to raising £657 for the charity in this fun, fully-inclusive, fundraising initiative, ping an email to: hello657@musclehelp.com. As we say in the charity, that’s the #powerof657,” added McGrath.

Channel 4 will be showing coverage of the Superhero Tri on Saturday 1st September

Click HERE to see photos on MHF’s dedicated Flickr Photo Channel.

Click HERE to see our Muscletastic fundraising pack.

Click HERE to learn about the charity’s #powerof657 campaign.

Contact:
Lydia Drukarz, Director
Wavelength Public Relations
M. 07977 454180
E. lydia@wavelengthpr.com

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Muscle Help Foundation selected as one of two charities supported by Ambition 2018

Multi award-winning family charity, the Muscle Help Foundation is delighted to announce that it has been selected as one of two beneficiary charities for this year's Ambition 2018.

Ambition 2018 is an annual one-day sales and marketing conference held this year on 14 November 2018 at The Spotlight conference venue in Hoddesdon, Hertfordshire.

Some of the UK’s leading experts in sales and marketing will be attending what will be a packed agenda with several high-quality speakers.

MHF’s CEO, Michael McGrath said:

“We are delighted to have been chosen as one of the two charities being supported by Ambition 2018. We look forward to working with the team who are running and sponsoring the event, especially Cariad Marketing a long-term friend and supporter of our charity.

I’m looking forward to engaging hearts and minds by saying a few words at the conference in sharing a little more about our work, impact and our #powerof657 initiative!

One transformational experience costs around £1,500 to deliver, so we’re planning on doing our bit in helping Ambition 2018 be a sell-out event! Ultimately, this will enable the charity to move a little closer to its goal of delivering 657 Muscle Dream experiences, that’s one for every muscle in the human body!

If you haven’t already, now’s the time to flex your financial muscle and buy your Ambition 2018 tickets. I look forward to saying hello to many of the delegates on the big day.

Ambition 2018 is a community event, sponsored and organised by local businesses for local businesses, providing an opportunity to network with fellow professionals from Broxbourne and the surrounding areas. All proceeds from ticket sales will be donated to the two beneficiary charities.

MHF delivers transformational experiences in the UK, known as Muscle Dreams for children and young people (8-29yrs) with Muscular Dystrophy (MD) and allied neuromuscular conditions.

Click HERE to learn more about Ambition 2018.

Click HERE to learn more about the charity’s #powerof657 campaign.

Contact:
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Wavelength Public Relations
M. 07977 454180
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BCD Meetings & Events adopts Muscle Help Foundation as one of its official charities for 2018

The Muscle Help Foundation (MHF) is thrilled to announce that it has been adopted as one of the official charities being supported in 2018 by BCD Meetings & Events (BCD M&E), Europe’s leading meetings and events agency.

MHF delivers transformational experiences in the UK, known as Muscle Dreams for children and young people (8-28yrs) with Muscular Dystrophy (MD) and allied neuromuscular conditions.

Driven by Fay Sharpe’s enthusiasm and support, the charity has been close to the heart of employees throughout the business and many of the staff have been volunteering on MHF’s annual signature Porsche Driving Experience and Flying Muscle Dream Programmes as well as the occasional VIP experience with some of MHF’s past Charity Partners that have included Mercedes AMG Petronas Formula One Team – these employees have not only directly witnessed the charity’s impact but also the experience has enriched and broadened their horizons, with many returning to support MHF on a voluntary basis, year after year.

Pictured above: Fay Sharpe (centre) with Muscle Dream beneficiaries & family members, plus representatives from the charity, specially invited guests and members of the Mercedes AMG Petronas Formula One Team who hosted a VIP experience at their Brackley factory

Whilst the events sector is constantly changing and evolving, the opportunity to truly make a difference in the lives of children and young people with MD has not gone unnoticed:

Fay Sharpe (pictured below), Vice President of BCD Meetings & Events commented:

“In our business, we relentlessly strive to create human experiences that are memorable; at the heart of The Muscle Help Foundation, I’ve seen and witnessed how this small family charity also strives in the pursuit of creating memorable experiences that are both unique and life-changing – there’s a natural alignment between our respective organisations. I’m proud in the knowledge that we can make a real difference where it matters, and I look forward to continuing to support their work.”

As part of its support in 2018, Team BCD M&E will be participating in this year’s Superhero Tri Challenge on 18th August at Dorney Lake, Windsor. MHF is actively recruiting to fill 8 FREE Team places (4 people per team, one of whom must have a disability) for this inclusive, all-day fun event – 5 team places have already been taken!

In return for their FREE entry, Team BCD M&E have committed to raise the minimum amount of £657.00 in sponsorship in support of the charity’s #powerof657 initiative. Despite extremely limited resources, MHF’s overarching goal is to deliver 657 Muscle Dream experiences, one for every muscle in the human body; to date 267 have been delivered, leaving a further 390 to go – if you can help the charity in any way, please get in touch.

MHF’s Founder & CEO Michael McGrath said:

“We are delighted to be formally recognised as one of the charities officially adopted by BCD M&E during 2018. We look forward to working closely with the team on a number of fundraising events throughout the year and of course, I’m especially delighted that Team BCD M&E will be taking part in August’s Superhero Tri Challenge because they’ll be up against Team McGrath – I say, bring it on as there’s nothing quite like a little competitive spirit!”

Businesses interested in joining Team BCD M&E and supporting MHF can register their interest and find out more info by pinging an email to: hello657@musclehelp.com

Contact:
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Wavelength Public Relations
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New Muscle Ambassador Vivek Gohil Shares Powerful Insights About His Life, His Hopes and His Dreams

Understanding the meaning of life has always been a passion of mine. Life is filled with experiences that form who you are today and continue to shape you in the future. Meeting Michael McGrath at the London 2012 Games Inspired Muscle Dreams programme was a defining moment, altering my perception of disability ~ no longer was it a barrier to legendary status. I realised that life is under my control ~ I just needed to fill it with meaning.

I was already born with a rare hereditary bleeding condition called Haemophilia A, who would think that I’d develop another hereditary condition? I was diagnosed with Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy at age 8 after a tough 5-year misdiagnosis. The prognosis of DMD was grim and life-changing.

The misdiagnosis was a confusing blur jeopardizing my primary education, as I constantly moved schools to accommodate my uncertain needs. My scoliosis corrective surgery interrupted my secondary education, it left me bed-bound for a year, as my NHS wheelchair was completely unsuitable for my needs. This isolation period was a pivotal turning point in my life, it was the foundation of who I am today.

My escape was to immerse myself into the world of comic books, funnily enough I read every comic book in 3 local libraries. Looking back, I realize the impact comics had in shaping my personality and beliefs, they taught me about willpower, strength, courage, to question everything and to never give up. The most important lesson was to make my own path through life and not to follow the ‘normal’ pathways decided for us.

I enjoyed maturing and developing into a confident adult at college. The positive feedback from teachers regarding my academic potential made me realise that physical disability doesn’t need to define me. I always wanted to experience university life, I did so at DeMontfort University (Leicester) where I studied Psychology. I had to leave halfway through my course due to ill health and care package issues. It was a difficult choice as I felt a failure and was concerned about isolation.

As it happened, I’ve never regretted that decision as I now had time to focus on what was significant to me: charity work.

Attending the 2012 Games Inspired Muscle Dreams event was positively life-changing. Being surrounded by such pure altruism, love and joy has never left me to this day. Interacting with Michael McGrath and experiencing his enthusiasm helping others with Muscular Dystrophy motivated me to discard my own restrictive internal ableism.

I wanted an avenue to express my thoughts and create a meaningful footprint in life. So, I started my blog Uncanny Vivek – I was stunned by how my life resonated with readers and the amount of wonderful opportunities I’ve had. Like the privilege to become a Muscle Warrior Ambassador and join such a wonderful team.

The future isn’t made of anything tangible – it’s created on hopes, dreams and memories. The Muscle Help Foundation continues to do just that.

Click HERE to learn more about our Ambassadors.

Click HERE to see our Muscletastic fundraising pack.

Click HERE to learn about the charity’s #powerof657 campaign.

Contact:
Lydia Drukarz, Director
Wavelength Public Relations
M. 07977 454180
E. lydia@wavelengthpr.com

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Muscle Ambassador Leah Booth Shares Her Story Including Insights About Her Life

Experiences come in all shapes and sizes, some are positive, some are negative, some are small and seemingly insignificant and some have the ability to shape you, change you and alter your future. I have gone through them all.

When I was younger, up until the age of 14, my experiences were pretty standard for someone my age. It was all about making friends, learning your times tables and trying to navigate the minefield that is ‘High School’ but as I got older, and my disability became more of a factor, my experiences began to change. At age 14 I discovered I needed surgery to correct Scoliosis, curvature of the spine. I was suddenly facing something I was completely unprepared for: it was a blur of test, appointments and medication leading up to an 11-hour surgery. I had to grow up practically overnight.

From that moment on I was an adult, which in some ways was fantastic because I felt so mature and in control of my life but at the same time I found it difficult to interact with people my own age. During this time, whilst on bed rest, I watched a lot of crime programmes on television and read dozens of books: which eventually led me to university and getting my degree in Criminology and Criminal Justice.

At the time, I didn’t realise that an experience as insignificant as watching Law & Order had set my life on a path I never thought it would take. And for a time, I was very happy working within the Criminal Justice System, volunteering with Hate Crime charities and my local police force, until new experiences carved out a different path for me.

After a breakdown in my care package meant I had to leave my work, I became angry and confused, and I felt like there was no light at the end of the tunnel. That was until my Muscle Help Foundation ‘Earn Your Wings’ flying experience catapulted my life into a new direction and gave me a new vision of a brighter future. Simply taking part in the experience, learning new skills, developing my confidence, allowed me to realise all my experiences in life meant I had a story to tell and a dream worth exploring.

I wanted to find a way to express myself and be able to share with others what life was like with a complex need – so I created my blog “Should have been a mermaid” and from there I was asked to go to events and do talks. I became a public speaker, sharing my experiences across the UK. And now I’m honoured to be a Muscle Warrior Ambassador for the very charity that helped shape my future.

Suddenly I realised my experiences: big, small, positive and negative had led me to this point in my life. Do I wish some of the experiences had been different? Yes. Do I wish I could do some of them over again? Absolutely. But that’s not how life works – without these experiences I wouldn’t be where I am today – happy.

ambassador-logo

Click HERE to learn more about our Ambassadors.

Click HERE to see our Muscletastic fundraising pack.

Click HERE to learn about the charity’s #powerof657 campaign.

Leah Booth
Muscle Ambassador

Muscle Ambassador Sulaiman Khan Shares His Story And Passion For The Creative Industries

In 2012, three days after my grandfather died, I went to the charity’s flagship Games Inspired Muscle Dreams event. During a period of deep grief, to be surrounded by people filled with so much passion, enthusiasm and care for people with Muscular Dystrophy, I felt the love. I haven’t looked back.

When I was diagnosed with muscular dystrophy as a baby, the doctors told my parents I was unlikely to live past the age of five. Over the years, this gloomy prognosis increased bit by bit. At the time of writing this, I’m 32.

Aside from the shadow of this hanging over my head, I didn’t learn to read and write until I was ten. The school I went to catered to a broad church of disability, but unfortunately too broad for me to learn the basics as someone with an exclusively physical disability, rather than mental. I was lucky enough to travel around the world with my parents – all experiences that I suspect helped shape my current attitude towards life: go for it!

With a gargantuan effort, and with support from my family, friends and carers, I graduated in 2012 with a degree in Advertising and Brand Communication. This was another bright spot in life – especially as I had no functioning wheelchair during much of my final year of the degree! Less of a bright spot was three years spent looking for work in the advertising and creative industries. For the most part, I found this already challenging industry to crack into was rife with even more challenges for someone with a disability. The struggle to find work and acceptance as someone who wanted to work and contribute to society, despite a severe disability, left me feeling lacking in confidence and deflated. I did find a job, but the barriers were still there and I found myself out of work again after eight months. This left me re-evaluating everything as I found my usually unfaltering enthusiasm was fairly dented by this point.

I’d previously experimented with ideas around creativity and disability on and off for some time – they were after all, two of the biggest factors in my life. So, in 2012, after losing my last grandparent, I found myself surrounded by people who had been through their own adversities and were there and present very much going for it. Not to mention the Paralympians that the world had just seen seemed to leave everyone (including me) feeling energised about how much those with disabilities have to offer. It was all exactly what I needed to re-find my fearlessness and start getting out of my comfort zone again.

I decided to embrace my passion for the creative industries but not wait for these industries to let me in. Basically, I’ve got a sledgehammer and I’m bashing my way through. My focus is now to find and match great disabled talent with creative institutions and agencies.

Being around, and working with, the lovely people at the Muscle Help Foundation taught me that it’s okay not to do things the traditional way, to find my own path and to be comfortable with what I’m doing and who I am. They’ve helped me see that scary predictions can be wrong, and even if they’re not wrong, there’s a way to make an impact and help others along life’s adventures. The future is as bright as I want it to be, and we all have the right and ability to be bold, wild, and fearless along the way.

ambassador-logo

Click HERE to learn more about our Ambassadors.

Click HERE to see our Muscletastic fundraising pack.

Click HERE to learn about the charity’s #powerof657 campaign.

Sulaiman Khan
Muscle Ambassador

Charity Announces Exciting New Ambassador Programme To Help Champion Its Cause

Multi award-winning family charity, the Muscle Help Foundation (MHF) has announced the launch of its new Ambassador programme to help champion its cause.

The charity is thrilled to announce the appointment of two new Ambassadors – Leah Booth (pictured above, from Blackburn, Lancashire who has spinal muscular atrophy type 2 or SMA2) and Sulaiman Khan (pictured above, from Woodford Green, East London, who has merosin-deficient congenital muscular dystrophy or MD-CMD).

At the helm of MHF’s Ambassador strategy is a plan to further establish its growing nationwide Muscle Warrior tribal community that offers support but also gives past beneficiaries and their families the opportunity to more fully engage with its STRONGER TOGETHER ethos. Its members will have more of a voice in not only sharing their Muscle Dream experiences but also championing the cause by raising awareness and funds in helping MHF meet its goals.

Alongside the charity’s main Facebook page, MHF has created a closed Facebook group for the new Ambassadors to generate conversations, share their experiences and bring their considerable energy, insight and passion to the charity’s future fundraising activities.

As part of their duties, Leah and Sulaiman will take over some of MHF’s social media streams, communicating directly with the public and others who may be interested in learning about the charity’s work and impact. They will share their stories, inspiring others to follow and support as well as bring their unique blend of fun and humour.

Leah Booth said:

“Experiences come in all shapes and sizes. Some are positive, some are negative, some are small and seemingly insignificant and some have the ability to shape you and alter your future. I have been through them all. My Muscle Help Foundation #EarnYourWings Flying Muscle Dream experience back in September 2015 catapulted my life into a new direction and gave me a new vision of a brighter future.

Simply taking part in that experience, learning new skills and developing my confidence allowed me to realise that all my experiences in life meant I had a story to tell and a dream worth exploring. Now I am honoured to be a Muscle Ambassador for the very charity that helped shape my future to where it is today – at a time in my life when I was lost, this small charity gave me the ability to dream again.”

Sulaiman Khan commented:

“It’s a huge honour to be a Muscle Ambassador for the Muscle Help Foundation. I am genuinely excited to give back to this amazing family run charity and support those with Muscular Dystrophy.

This role is hugely important to me because I want to help children and young people find their shining light to do awesome things in their lives. I’m looking forward to working with the charity to inspire hearts and change minds, and to help continue to grow the wonderful tribe known as Muscle Warriors across the UK. Onwards and upwards!”

MHF delivers highly-personalised, transformational experiences in the UK called Muscle Dreams for children and young people with the muscle wasting disease, Muscular Dystrophy (MD) and allied neuromuscular conditions; the charity’s goal is to deliver 657 Muscle Dreams, that’s one for every muscle in the body. As of October 2017, 264 have been delivered.

The charity has a loyal following of beneficiaries, families, carers, volunteers, corporate partners and supporters, whom MHF affectionately call Muscle Warriors.

MHF’s CEO, Michael McGrath commented:

“I am delighted to welcome Leah and Sulaiman on board as Ambassadors in representing our small family charity. They’ve both been past Muscle Dream beneficiaries and by default, great MHF advocates and friends. We’re already supporting them as they begin this new journey that will see them not only champion our work, but also attract vital new fans, followers and supporters to our growing tribe of Muscle Warriors across the UK.

There’s a strong alignment of values that both Leah and Sulaiman have with the charity – these key appointments will support our aim to not only grow our community and reach new families but also directly support new beneficiaries as their Muscle Dreams unfold.

It’s my belief that in this changing world, the power of their voices gives even greater causal credibility than some celebrities where the value of endorsements are increasingly being questioned – a view underpinned by research consultancy NfpSynergy who found that only one in five young people aged between 11 to 25yrs (across mainland Britain) said they would support a charity because a celebrity happened to endorse it. It’s interesting to note that the research found that ‘causal enthusiasm’ diminishes with age – with this forefront of mind, harnessing the talents, skills and endorsement of Leah and Sulaiman to positively influence other potential future Ambassadors is extremely valuable. Being an Ambassador also gives them a great development platform – they know that they ‘own’ the opportunity and the ‘responsibility’ that the role brings. They also know that they are very much at the heart of its ongoing evolution and future success.

Put simply, they get what we do because they’ve both directly experienced the transformational nature of our work – they want to help, they want to influence and I know they can educate, inform and inspire loyalty because I’ve already witnessed their passion and their ability to engage – I’m so incredibly proud to have such awesome, authentic Ambassadors on our team!”

Click HERE to learn more about our Ambassadors.

Click HERE to see our Muscletastic fundraising pack.

Click HERE to learn about the charity’s #powerof657 campaign.

Contact:
Lydia Drukarz, Director
Wavelength Public Relations
M. 07977 454180
E. lydia@wavelengthpr.com
Follow Wavelength PR on Twitter

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