September was Childhood Cancer Awareness Month and the Freedom Health Insurance team showed their support by putting on an internal food fundraiser event that aimed to raise awareness and funds for Alice’s Arc. Alice’s Arc is a charity that supports a rare and aggressive type of cancer, rhabdomyosarcoma, that is most common in children and young adults.
Rhabdomyosarcoma develops in the supporting or connective tissues of the body including fat, nerves, bones, and cartilage but the cause is currently unknown. Alice’s Arc aims to raise more funds to support the clinical research to be able to provide less invasive and better treatment options as well as achieve higher success rates.
This charity was chosen by one of our staff members who has a close connection to this charity. Her son’s friend, Dexter, developed rhabdomyosarcoma when he was just five years old. Dexter fought a hard battle of intense treatments, but unfortunately the cancer became too aggressive and it was considered inoperable. Dexter sadly passed away in July 2022 at the age of just seven years old. To read more about Dexter’s story you can visit the Alice’s Arc website.
Sara Wakeling, Founder & CEO, Alice's Arc:
"We are absolutely delighted that Freedom Health Insurance supported Alice's Arc, having been touched by Dexter's story. The money raised will go towards vital research to understand more about rhabdomyosarcoma as well as creating new treatments and identifying drugs that can help improve survival rates. One day in the future we hope breakthroughs from our research will help diversify treatment options and save the lives of children diagnosed with rhabdomyosarcoma."
How much did we raise?
We are extremely proud of the generosity of the Freedom team as we managed to raise a total of £179! This money will go towards the vital clinical research to develop less harsh treatment options, increase survival rates, and support families that are sadly dealing with a diagnosis.
How can you fundraise?
Fundraising is crucial for charities such as Alice’s Arc to be able to continue to do what they do - fund vital research to find and improve treatments and cures for people dealing with a diagnosis. To donate to Alice’s Arc you can visit their website. Or, for more ways you can get involved in donating for charity, here are some easy A-Z ideas you can try to raise money.
What was the theme of our food fundraising event?
The theme of the food event was international food, staff were encouraged to prepare something that either represented their own culture or from another culture that they have previously enjoyed. This shone a light on the diversity Freedom Health Insurance has within the office and it gave staff an opportunity to try some delicious new food and get to know their colleagues!
Best international food competition winner
To further incentivise staff to get involved with this fundraising event, we circulated a survey around the office for the staff to vote for their favourite international dish and the winner would receive a restaurant voucher.
Congratulations to the winner of best international dish, our Finance Assistant, Rahala!
“I made various dishes that originated from Bangladesh including vegetable samosa’s, onion bhaji’s, dhal and keema borra (lentil and mince meatballs) and mackerel bites. These dishes are seasoned with traditional South Asian spices alongside other ingredients such as chili, turmeric, and coriander. They are typically prepared and eaten during significant religious festivals such as Ramadhan and Eid and the textures and flavours remind me of my childhood which brings back some wonderful memories. Food is such a large part of my culture and I wanted to share this with my colleagues”.
How we limited food waste
As most of our staff contributed with some homemade food, we had a large variety of delicious treats, both sweet and savoury to enjoy throughout the day. However, we were mindful about the impact of food waste so to limit this as much as possible, we encouraged people to bring in empty containers and take leftovers home to their families and friends. This meant that at the end of the food event, there was no food wastage.
What did we learn?
All in all, Freedom’s International Food Fundraiser event was both rewarding and fun. It lifted spirits in the office on a Monday and encouraged staff to learn more about their fellow team members, their culture, and their foods. But most importantly, we succeeded in raising important money and awareness for Alice’s Arc charity.