Hi from Alex, Miles and Cressy at Charlotte’s BAG, and welcome to newsletter no.4.
The last month has been really exciting for us, with a huge leap in our public profile, and more donations along the way too. Charlotte’s youtube channel has now been viewed over 2.2m times and has almost 10,500 subscribers.

The Lorraine programme goes out on ITV every weekday morning between 8.30-9.30, covering anything and everything under the sun. Cressy decided to nominate Alex for the title ‘Inspirational Woman of the Year’, run by the programme as part of the much respected annual Women of the Year campaign. There then followed a couple of weeks of secret arrangements and much cloak and dagger stuff, before Alex was revealed – to her shock and surprise – as one of three finalists. A very emotional ‘big reveal’ took place at Alex’s work and the following week Alex went up to the studios to meet the other two finalists and appear on the show. All three were then wafted off to the Inter-Continental Hotel, where they were presented to HRH The Duchess of Cornwall before sitting down to lunch with over 400 influential women. Alex’ award was presented after a short film about her nomination and Charlotte herself, and she reduced the whole audience to tears speaking so movingly and beautifully about Charlotte, after which she received a standing ovation. Several celebratory glasses later, and Alex was back on the show the following morning, award in hand.

As a direct result of winning this award we have received over £1,000 in donations, and Alex has also been interviewed for Prima magazine (publication in Feb issue, out early January) and the Daily Mail (publication date awaited).

This documentary was broadcast on Channel 4 on Thursday November 26. Featuring Charlotte and two other cancer patients, Channel 4 chose a late broadcast time (10.00pm) because of the serious nature of the content. We might be biased, but for us, Charlotte shone through. This was another big boost for our awareness, and the producers hope it may go on to win a BAFTA award early next year.

If you didn’t manage to watch, and would like to, please contact us at info@charlottesbag.com and we can send you a special link for private viewing only. You may forward the link privately to friends etc, but it is NOT for sharing on any form of public website or social media! Sorry about that, but if it is shared publicly it means that Charlotte’s youtube channel may be taken off air…

If you hop onto a bus in Brighton in November, look out for posters about Charlotte’s BAG. We are very grateful to Brighton Buses, who have given us poster space for free on 92 buses throughout November, reaching 1.4 million people.

Is finally happening! It’s a really simple idea: sign up to get a free wristband or keyring, use it to make contactless payment, and every time you spend you make a donation to Charlotte’s BAG. You are in total control: the accessory is linked to your bank account and you decide how much or little you give every month – 5p per purchase, or top up to the nearest £, it’s up to you. So instead of groping for your wallet or purse you can tap and go and donate at the same time. The accessories retail at £20-30 each, but if you sign up as one of our pioneers it’s yours to keep, whether you support Charlotte’s BAG or not. We have 230 to give away – but they are going fast! (UK only at this stage, apologies to those not in the UK)

As a result of the support everyone has given Charlotte’s BAG over the last year, we have now provided a lump sum of £120,000 which will pay a scientific researcher for three years, so that we can beat glioblastoma faster than currently predicted. Fundraising continues of course, because scientific research is not a cheap business, but knowing that we have guaranteed that person in place is a major achievement in just 12 months.

We know there is lots happening; we just can’t talk about it yet! Please be patient with us, and as soon as we can go public with some concrete information we will.

Thank you to authors Ellie Griffiths and Lesley Thompson, and football journalist Matthew Lorenzo whose donations of signed books helped us make over £200 on eBay in the last couple of weeks. We’re always grateful for anything we can auction for Charlotte’s BAG!

We hate to bang on about it, but this is money for nothing for us! If you shop online, over 4000 retailers will give a percentage of what you spend to us, at NO COST to you. It’s really easy and safe to use, so please check out www.easyfundraising.org.uk and see if your Christmas shopping can divert some funds our way!

Comments, feedback, ideas – please get in touch via info@charlottesbag.com and one of us will get back to you as soon as possible.

Why support Charlotte’s BAG? Glioblastoma kills. It does not discriminate by age, sex or gender, and its progress is rapid and cruel, stripping the person of their faculties while leaving the conscious mind intact. Only 1 per cent of UK national cancer research funding goes into brain tumours… not surprisingly, there has been minimal progress, and we want to change that.

With very best wishes and all our thanks
Alex, Miles and Cressy
The Charlotte’s BAG team