A group of boot camp regulars will be working up a sweat for very different reasons next Saturday (November 24) when they perform a Full Monty routine for Children’s Liver Disease Foundation (CLDF).
The charity is a special one to Michael Butterfield from Allerton Bywater, who runs the Commando Fit boot camp at Temple Newsam, as his three year old daughter, Ada, has the rare and incurable liver disease, biliary atresia.
“Ada was only five weeks old when she was diagnosed and immediately had to undergo emergency surgery,” explains 40 year old Michael. “Although this was deemed successful, the likelihood is that one day she will need a liver transplant. This was obviously devastating news for my wife Emma and myself and CLDF has been invaluable to us as a family. Their support team have been there for us from the start and their website has helped us so many times. Through the charity we have also got to meet many other families who are affected by childhood liver disease and this has also been a real support to us.
“Giving back to CLDF is really important to us and I came up with the idea of the Full Monty when watching a similar event for another charity earlier this year. I was surprised and delighted when six of my boot camp colleagues agreed but of course it meant that there was no going back!”
In fact, Michael found that when word got round, there was plenty of enthusiasm for his fundraising event, which will take place at Thorpe Park Hotel in Colton. Michaela Anderson, the choreographer for the Castleford Tigers cheerleaders, and her daughter, Elle a member of the cheerleading squad, have stepped in to provide the choreography for the group, a mix of builders, painters, retail and office staff who have no performance experience between them! Michael’s wife, Emma, has scoured all the local charity shops to find items for the costumes while Sherburn based dressmakers, Leading Ladies, have done all the alterations free of charge.
The local community have also been very generous in supplying raffle and auction prizes. “We’ve had a great response,” says Michael. “Our auction lots include signed shirts from Leeds FC and RFC, signed boxing gloves from Nigel Benn and Anthony Joshua and overnight stays at the hotel, who are also giving us a percentage of bar takings from the evening. We have only been practising for a couple of weeks but the pressure is now on us to put on a great show so that everyone has a fun evening!”
Alison Taylor, Chief Executive of Children’s Liver Disease Foundation commented: “CLDF is the only UK charity dedicated to fighting all childhood liver diseases, by providing information and emotional support, funds for research and a voice for all those affected. In order to do this however, we rely almost entirely on voluntary donations so we’re delighted to hear about Michael’s plans. He and Emma have put a lot of work into this event with the support of the local community and we hope everyone involved has a fun evening.”
There are still a few tickets available, priced £50 each for the evening, which includes a three course meal. Contact firstname.lastname@example.org.
For more information on CLDF visit childliverdisease.org.