Dervock man Robert Stewart had modest expectations when he began a fund-raising campaign for a leading cancer charity.
His plans were to garner support from family and friends in the village in the hope of raising somewhere between £500 and £1000 which by anyone’s standards would be a satisfactory and worthy achievement.
Donations soon came in thick and fast and two key events, one at the nearby Church of Ireland, organised by Penny Johnston, and another at the Blackwater Bar on April 11 saw the proceeds reach several thousand pounds.
Last Friday night Robert and his family as well as those who helped his efforts presented a cheque for a whopping £4200 to Claire Hogarth, fund-raising manager for Friends of the Cancer Centre in Belfast.
Claire was bowled over by the amount as was Robert who couldn’t offer enough praise for those who helped him.
“I say the support came from family and friends, but I couldn’t distinguish between the two – they are all my dear friends and without them I would not have achieved this amount,” Robert admitted.
Robert was diagnosed with prostate cancer a year ago and because of the excellent treatment received at the Cancer Centre he, like many others, decided to give something back. The April 11 night saw donations pour in and this combined with an auction and a raffle saw thousands lifted. Donations made after that left Robert with an amount he never dreamed he would achieve.
Claire Hogarth said the money would go a long way in helping those with cancer issues.
“Everyone who is due for radiotheraphy has to come to the Cancer Centre and we always need donations to keep going,” she said.
Robert has many people to thank including Ivan King and all the other people who helped him as well as Trevor Hanna for providing music at the Blackwater and Coleraine Printing Company for tickets. Also to those who attended the function.
“Anyone who knows me will realise my gratitude to them for their help; everyone was fantastic and it shows the generosity of not only the people of Dervock but in the area. I hope to do another one for Friends of the Cancer Centre soon,” he added.