Bookmaker Betfred has stepped up to help fund the Royal Manchester Hospital £4 million appeal seeking to purchase vital equipment for children facing life-threatening conditions.
Today, Betfred founder Fred Done has declared that the bookmaker will donate all over-the-counter (OTC) profits made at the opening day of the Cheltenham Festival 2019 (12-15 March), to Royal Manchester’s ‘iMRI Appeal’.
The appeal, which will fund state-of-the-art intra-operative Magnetic Resonance Imaging (iMRI) equipment, will be used to help children from across the North West region being treated for debilitating and life-threatening conditions such as brain tumours, traumatic brain injuries and problems with the central nervous system and epilepsy.
Fred Done has stated that this charitable directive is personal to his family, as he lost his wife Mo last year after she was diagnosed with a brain tumour, detailing:
“It is humbling that I’m in a position to help with this appeal for much-needed equipment. “From my own sad experience, I know how important it is to have world-class equipment available to help save the lives of your loved ones. I feel privileged that I can help … and I do hope the best scanner money can buy will end up saving the lives of seriously ill children brought to Manchester from all over the country.”
Done and Betfred will underwrite the contribution at a minimum of £100,000, with the bookmaker that its overall figure will be far greater – ‘dependent on Cheltenham 2019 results across Betfred’s +1,600 betting shops’.
The day’s profits will provide a major, much-needed boost to buy the iMRI scanner which will be based at Royal Manchester Children’s Hospital and will transform brain surgery for some of the 270,000 children who are treated there each year.
The iMRI will allow for surgeons to scan a child during the operation itself, while they are still in a safe, sterile environment. Currently patients can wait days after a procedure until they are well enough for another scan, this can be an agonising and stressful time for young patients and their families.
Furthermore, The iMRI will mean children better outcomes for patients with more accurate surgeries, fewer surgeries and reduced risk of infections.
Maurice Watkins CBE, Chairman of Charities at the hospital, said: “We’re incredibly grateful to Fred Done for committing to making a difference to this life saving and life changing Appeal.
“We appreciate how special it is when a donor has a personal reason for reaching out and making a difference in this way. We feel very privileged that Fred Done has chosen to support the iMRI Scanner Appeal.”
For more information about the appeal, or to make a donation, visit https://rmchcharity.org.uk/imri-appeal