(Not Another) Blue Monday 22nd Jan - Debbi

You may have seen my 'launch' of the (Not Another) Blue Monday part of my blog last week. If not, you can see the post here but the general idea is to highlight the people who are doing 'good' in the community, many of whom aren't usually recognised. You don't have to have a crown, or have raised thousands of pounds, just knowing you're making a positive change is all that matters.

My first post is about a lovely woman called Debbi. You might recognise her; she runs the Fox and Hounds in Prudhoe. I first met Debbi when I used to go along to the pub for an hour every few weeks to see people - It didn't last a particularly long time but I enjoyed it. When I deteriorated and found out to get a suitable wheelchair, I would need to raise a substantial amount of money, Debbi (despite not knowing me very well and not seeing me for many months) was one of the first to offer to help me.

Debbi, with the help of a team of others, organised an awards night at the pub. There was live music, a raffle, food and even engraved awards for the winners. The pub was packed and I honestly had no idea how much they raised, I only was told that if they managed to sell £100 of tickets then Dan would wear a dress (which he did!) so I thought we might get £150. I had to leave after an hour because I was poorly but I got handed a note and started crying when I saw they'd already raised over £800. By the end of the night, they had raised a massive £1,100 towards my chair, which has given me so much independence and allowed me to get outside again.

And this isn't it. The reason why I've chosen Debbi as my first Blue Monday star is because she's helped so many people and continues to support local people and organisations each year. She held an awards night in 2017 which raised £600 for Prudhoe Castle First School. The Big Fat Quiz of the year raised £80 for Pulmonary Fibrosis and an afternoon tea raised £400 for the Children's Heart Unit. A beach party in 2015 also raised £1,000 for the Children's Heart Unit. Add this to the money they've raised for Jack & Jill's Nursery before it closed and we're talking multiple thousands of pounds.

There reason I think it's so amazing isn't just because of the amount of money raised. The amount of organisation which goes into running an event takes so much time and effort, from writing countless letters for raffle prizes to cooking food, so the amount of hours which have been put in to all of these events is really applaudable. Rio, one of her sons and is only 9, has already followed in her footsteps and sold cakes for charity.

So, next time you're dropping by the Fox (and what a better reason to pop along now...) do tell Debbi she's very much appreciated for what she does. Well done Debbi for being our first featured good'un.

Kate x

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