Branch Chairman: Eric Seddon
"My wife was diagnosed with MND in October 2008. We attended our first South Lancs branch meeting in January 2009. The meetings were quite relaxed but very informative and we were made to feel very welcome. Both of us were determined to find out as much as possible about MND and fight it.
Sadly my wife passed away in February 2010.
I started to help more with fundraising and awareness and eventually joined the committee in 2011. I also attend North West Regional Forum meetings as a representative of the South Lancs Branch to help us strengthen all the groups in the area, sharing ideas and helping each other with events. We are all working together to fight MND. I am determined to help other people living with MND and their families".
Branch Secretary: Gaynor Lennon
"Way back in 1986 I watched a programme on C4 called The Best Kept Secret. It was about a woman who had Motor Neurone Disease. It was a heartbreaking story to watch. I thought I would try and find a local branch to join and offer a bit of voluntary work. There was none and so the then Head Office asked me to start one for Wigan/St. Helens. After a few months of publicity I eventually had an Inaugural meeting at Billinge Library. Some 50 people attended including 3 who had MND. From that a smaller meeting created the Committee and I found myself as Chairman. I kept this post for 5 years meeting some amazing people, so kind and generous.
I gave up the voluntary work as I had to start full time shift work including alternate weekends. I have not lost anyone personally to MND, but since 1986 know a lot of people who have. As I was approaching my retirement, I checked the website and was delighted to find the South Lancashire group was still going strong. I came back into the fold in Summer 2010 and was in awe of the good work being done by those people who had carried on after I left, and the many new people who have got involved.
I have now become the Secretary and look forward to learning the ropes."
Branch Treasurer: Val Riley
"I became involved in the South Lancs Branch of MNDA when I sadly lost my husband to MND in 2012.
I feel very passionate about helping as I feel MND is something that more people need to be aware of.
I am now the Treasurer of the Branch and enjoy the work and the people that I meet!"
Telephone: 01695 622043
Fundraising and Social Media Officer: Sarah Lewis
"I became aware of MND at a young age as I lost my dad Ray Ryan in September 1994, I feel very passionate about helping raise awareness of Motor Neurone Disease and raise funds to help work towards a "world free of MND" I take full advantage of social media by raising awareness of MND by taking part in snap actions by simply tweeting MP's to taking part in social media fundraising and awareness trends such at the "High5 for MND, Ice Bucket Challenge and SelfTea4MND.
I am also the fundraising contact for the branch, so if you have any fundraising ideas but need any assistance feel free to give me an e-mail and I will be more that happy to help (this could be simple things such as giving you a running vest for a sponsored run, balloons and banners for your fundraising event, or how you go about planning your event) I can also promote any events you are taking part in....so if you are doing a run, holding a fundraising evening let me know and I will share on social media and publish on our website" :)
Association Visitor: Joyce Gilligan
"I became aware of MND when my close friend Stan, who was a well known publican in St Helens for over 20 years, was diagnosed.Following diagnosis, Stan did get some support from the local branch, but, they were newly formed and in their infancy. Nevertheless, I was inspired by the branch and decided to get involved myself. I subsequently trained to be an Association Visitor and have been in post for 14 years, I also joined the branch committee.If I can make some small difference to the life of a person with MND and their loved ones, it makes everything worthwhile".
"I joined the MNDA South Lancs branch in 1996 to help raise money after my brother John Bullen was diagnosed with MND. Although this was a very difficult time for everyone close to my brother, I wanted to not only understand more about MND, but, also to help other people with MND and the people they cared about.
I joined the branch committee 3 years later and subsequently trained as an Association Visitor around 14 years ago.
Since becoming an Association Visitor I have supported a lot of people with MND and their loved ones. This has been an extremely rewarding and humbling experience".
"I first became aware of MND and the South Lancashire branch of the MNDA in 1991. In that year my dad, Thomas Hewlett, was diagnosed with MND and we lost him just 8 weeks later. We lost touch with the branch a little while after, but became involved again in 2005 when we lost our son to MND at the young age of 27. Since then I have lost two further family members to MND. I have been going to the branch meetings on and off for a few years. I am passionate about helping to raise awareness of MND, helping people with MND and their carers and wanted to give something back to the Association. So, in April 2015 I became the Campaigns Contact for the branch. My role is to raise awareness of the disease with people who make decisions about care and to ensure that the services are there for people living with MND. I am the branch lead on national and local campaigns. So, you will see me meeting with MPs, local councillors and local health and social care professionals. I also represent the branch at the Regional Delivery Planning meetings, where we make and monitor a 5 year plan for services in Lancashire, Greater Manchester and South Cumbria. I also became a member of the committee this year. It's a humbling and rewarding experience. If you feel that you could join me in talking to MPs, councillors and /or others professionals, please let me know - it is very powerful to have someone alongside me to tell personal stories of living with MND or caring for someone with MND".
"My Dad, sister Christine and I first attended the South Lancs Branch following the death of my mum to MND in August 2004. She had been diagnosed in May 2004 and we had not had chance to get involved with the Branch prior to her death. I joined the Committee in 2015 as a general member. I hope the work we do goes a little way to helping provide some assistance for sufferers to make their life more comfortable and also to help raise awareness for this devastating illness".
"I joined the MNDA South Lancs branch in 2017 following the death of my dad from MND in order to help raise awareness of this brutal condition after my dad John Bullock was only diagnosed with MND just 3 weeks before he passed away due to a general lack of awareness of the condition within some sectors of the medical profession and the general public alike. Although it has been a difficult journey, I wanted to not only understand more about MND, but also to help other people with MND and the people they cared about in conjunction with raising more awareness of MND.
It has been an extremely rewarding experience to be a small part of the South Lancs Branch of the MNDA and it's something that i'm incredibly proud of".