Saturday, January 11, 2014
Family and friends remembering a treasured campaigner are ‘overwhelmed’ to have reached their fundraising target three months early – and plan to keep on going.
A memorial fund was set up in the honour of Mark Williams, who tirelessly fought to improve older people’s mental health provision, and was lauded for his charity work in Sidmouth and beyond.
Tributes poured in for Mark after he died at the age of 64 last April after a short battle with lung cancer.
His loved ones aimed to raise £1,000 for Hospiscare in Exeter – the charity that cared for him in his final days – before the first anniversary of his death.
They have already hit that target, and his beloved Sid Valley Rotary Club has donated a further £500.
Mark’s daughter Lydia Mansi, raised much of the money by selling donated books in her shop, Woolbrook News.
“We have been overwhelmed by the support and well-wishes we have had since starting our fundraising efforts and can’t believe we have reached £1,000 already,” she said.
“It’s amazing to think that we’ve got to £1,000 selling books for 50 pence and a pound. It has proved incredibly popular with customers who regularly buy books, read them and then bringing them back for us to resell.”
Many of the books belonged to Mark, who was an avid reader and collector.
Donations have come in by the box load and include unopened coffee table books worth £40.
Lydia added: “Sid Valley Rotary was such a major part of Daddy’s life and we are really touched that they have raised £500 in his name for Hospiscare, it has meant we have reached our target three months ahead of schedule, which is amazing – but we’re not stopping there!”
She said they plan to raise even more money for Hospiscare through events over the summer, and plan to ‘aim high’ with a target of £3,000 next year.