Be inspired by these amazing mums who are shortlisted for the Tesco Mum of the Year Awards 2013
We’ve had nearly 2000 nominations for the Tesco Mum of the Year Awards 2013 and spent days reading every single one. Thank you to everyone who nominated someone – your stories have made us smile and cry in equal measure.
It’s been so hard but, after making our initial shortlist of 35 mums, we’ve finally made a shorter shortlist of 14 mums and thought you’d like to know.
We’ll be picking the winners from these shortlisted mums and will announce them here soon, so keeping checking the site to find out first!
When Ann’s youngest son Muir, now 15, was diagnosed with Dravet Syndrome (a rare form of epilepsy) she realised there was a lack of funding and support for families and founded the Muir Maxwell Trust to help sufferers. The Trust is now the most significant children's charity raising funds for paediatric epilepsy in the UK. Despite suffering from an incurable brain tumour, Ann, who’s in charge of fundraising, has raised an incredible £7 million and committed to raise £1million towards the Muir Maxwell Epilepsy Centre, a research centre 'without walls', in partnership with the University of Edinburgh College of Medicine.
After her eight-year-old son Todd was diagnosed with a malignant brain tumour and lost his hair during two years of chemotherapy, Ellen set up a charity called Bandanas for the Brave. The charity gives a free bandana to every child undergoing treatment for cancer in Northern Ireland, to help them feel more confident when they lose their hair. She’s also managed to raise £50,000 for the Northern Ireland Cancer Fund.
Margaret’s 18-year-old son James was one of the 96 killed at the Hillsborough football match. She became theChair of the Hillsborough Families Support Group and has campaigned tirelessly for 23 years to find the truth about what happened that day. It has recently been ruled that fans were not to blame for the disaster.
When Jane’s five-month-old son Saul was diagnosed with Duchenne muscular dystrophy – a disease that affects muscle and brain function and can result in teenage death – she started the charity Action Duchenne to campaign for new clinical drugs. Janet has raised a staggering £4 million for research and, as the disease affects learning, has also developed a computer-based reading programme for children, which has been proved clinically effective.
Sara set up the charitable organisation Champs Appeal to raise awareness of Hirchsprungs disease (a rare bowel condition) after her son was diagnosed with it. Champs Appeal is the world’s first organisation dedicated to helping sufferers of this disease. Sara speaks worldwide to other sufferers and organises conferences for medical professionals to share knowledge.
Jane set up a national charity to raise awareness of Group B Streptococcal infection in newborn babies and avoid unnecessary deaths after her youngest son Theo passed away from the infection. Jane found there was little information available and no UK guidelines – so now her national charity Group B Strep Support provides information for parents and health professionals and campaigns for testing to be made freely available. Jane was awarded an MBE by Prince Charles in the New Year’s Honours List in 2012.
Kate set up Charity Dreamgirls, which supports lesser-know charities with awareness and fundraising events. Kate’s own successful branding company, Insight with Passion, dedicates 20 per cent of its time working with the charities in an Access for All scheme she set up, plus Kate spends 35 per cent of her time doing charity work.
Once written off as an expected suicide, Caroline battled through her painful experiences and set up social enterprise Harmless to help and support people who self harm. The national voluntary organisation aims to provide services, support, information and training for anyone involved in self-harm and the profits go back into services. This year Harmless was awarded the Prince’s Trust Community Impact Award and has been contracted to Nottinghamshire Healthcare Trust for services, including staff training.
After joining the committee for her daughter’s local preschool, Mireille discovered it wasn't making ends meet and would have to close. Her voluntary part-time role became full time as she rallied the community for funds to keep the preschool open. She turned it into a community charity and viable business, saved seven teachers' jobs, expanded the preschool, employed more people, and involved a local community cafe that now provides meals
Fifteen years ago, Jill set up the Sunshine Centre, a lottery-funded project in a deprived area of Banbury that allows local families to drop in and receive support. She also provides childcare clubs, training courses for parents, as well as summer schools and day trips.
Anna mortgaged her own house to set up an autism school after her two autistic sons couldn’t get into a specialist school. Anna went on to found a college and now has an international following of 50,000 mums of autistic children. She talks to mainstream schools and families about autism and has worked with Childline and NSPCC on improving training on disability bullying. Incredibly, one of her sons also suffers from epilepsy and so only sleeps three to four hours a night.
Diagnosed with Non-Hodgkins Follicular Lymphoma (cancer of the blood), Rinal had to terminate her pregnancy at 15 weeks so she could have chemotherapy. She carries out voluntary work for the Asian Women’s Cancer Group and sits on a patient experience board. She bravely created a blog detailing her experiences during treatment and gives hope to other sufferers.
Professional horsewoman Claire was paralysed from chest down after a riding accident. Determined to walk again she worked with physiotherapists to build her strength, met and married husband Dan and gave birth to daughter Maisie. In April 2012, she walked the London Marathon wearing robotic legs and completed the 26.2 miles in 16 days, raising £200,000 for Spinal Research. Claire was invited to light the Paralympic Games flame in Trafalgar Square.
Mum of five birth children, Lynn became a foster carer and adopted two premature girls with disabilities. She set up an after-school group after finding there was a lack of support for disabled children in her area and started the charity Pathways 4 All providing social activities for children with special needs in the North Tyneside area. Lynn is currently building a day centre with sensory rooms, IT suite and craft rooms after raising £400,000 to convert an old hospital building.
If the amazing mum you know didn’t make the short shortlist, you can still show her how much you appreciate her by giving her a Mum of the Year certificate - available to download free here. Just write in her name and your name – you’ll make her day!