Woman raises thousands for GNAAS at charity ball

A MOTHER has celebrated her 40th birthday by holding a charity ball in aid of two causes, including the Great North Air Ambulance Service (GNAAS), which airlifted her son.

Carol Harrison, from Wigton, hosted the ball at the White Heather Hotel in Kirkbride and raised more than £9,000 which was split between GNAAS and a local man called George Gregson who has Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy (DMD).

Mrs Harrison chose to fundraise for GNAAS after her son Cameron, 15, required the services of the charity in 2014 when he injured his back while playing football in the school yard.

The mother-of-four said: “Because he hurt his back he was advised not to move by an off-duty paramedic who was passing by at the time. The paramedics from the North West Ambulance Service then arrived and they daren’t move him so they called in GNAAS and they came within minutes.”

The GNAAS paramedic and doctor team assessed Cameron’s injuries and airlifted him to the Royal Victoria Infirmary in Newcastle.

He was checked over and underwent a CT scan but fortunately he wasn’t as seriously injured as first thought and was allowed back home later that night.

Mrs Harrison said: “After what happened with Cameron we wanted to give something back, and I knew when the time was right we would. GNAAS offer a fantastic service and look after your health, and to me there is nothing more important than your health, so we need to support them wherever we can.”

237 people attended Mrs Harrison’s charity ball, which was held in June, and she was delighted with how much was raised.

She said: “We had a great night and raised a lot more than we thought we would. At the start of the evening I made a speech and mentioned GNAAS and Cameron’s incident and George also said a few words before we had our meal. We also held an auction and had a tombola with a one in two chance of winning, where you could get anything from marmite to microwaves. Once the band Room 101 started playing, the dancefloor was heaving.”

Mrs Harrison and Mr Gregson recently visited the GNAAS base with their families to hand over the money and thank the crew for the service they provide.

To support GNAAS and its doctor-led teams, please visit the charity’s website at www.gnaas.com or call 01768-899150. Last year, it needed to raise £5.1m to survive.

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