One year on: How the Firefighters 100 Lottery is changing lives

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In the 12 months since its launch on bonfire night last year, the Firefighters 100 Lottery has raised more than £120,000 for good causes, thanks to the 3,000 people who play each week. It’s a phenomenal figure. And the FBU has even greater ambitions for the lottery over the coming years. So, if you are already a supporter, thank you! If not, here’s a few reasons why you should sign up.

ANDY ADAMS

Andy Adams and his family
Andy Adams (far right) and his family

Watch manager Andy Adams became the first recipient of lottery funds earlier this year after being seriously injured whilst responding to a fire at a disused building in Renfrewshire, Scotland. His spinal cord was severed and his neck fractured after a wall collapsed on him. Andy can no longer walk and has no feeling below his chest.

A much needed £20,000 donation from the lottery allowed Andy and his family to plan effectively for the long term in circumstances so challenging that most of us could not begin to imagine them.

A new home was the first priority. The family’s old ex-council house was too small for the adaptations needed to allow Andy to get about in his wheelchair.

Released from hospital in June, Andy has now moved into a three bedroom ground floor flat suitable for people with disabilities. It means Andy, his partner Clare and two children Hannah and Darren are living together as a family once more.

“Rehab is about getting yourself back together to lead as normal a life as possible. Having your family all under one roof is pretty fundamental,” Andy told Firefighter. “The donation from the lottery has allowed our family to get on with our lives. I am so grateful for everyone’s support. It has changed everything for us.”

THE RED PLAQUE SCHEME

Firefighters Adam Meere and Billy Faust
Firefighters Billy Faust and Adam Meere.

The lottery will fund a new scheme to design, produce and install commemorative plaques to honour firefighters who have died in action. A fire service equivalent to the English Heritage blue plaque scheme, the initiative will place red plaques either at sites where firefighters have died or at the station where they were based. The first plaque will honour Adam Meere and Billy Faust, two firefighters who died after rescuing a man from a blaze in Bethnal Green, east London, in 2004. 

NATIONAL FIREFIGHTERS MEMORIAL

Matt Wrack with Colin Livett, of the Firefighters Memorial Trust , at the National Firefighters Memorial, St Pauls
Matt Wrack with Colin Livett (left), of the Firefighters Memorial Trust, at the National Firefighters Memorial, St Pauls

The names of 45 fallen firefighters will be added to the Firefighters Memorial at St Paul’s Cathedral. The work is being undertaken by the Firefighters Memorial Trust and funded by the lottery which is helping to commemorate comrades who have lost their lives while protecting the public. Colin Livett, chairman of the trust, said: “The support of the union will enable the trust to further enhance the awareness of the work and sacrifices made by the fire and rescue services of the UK.”

GRENFELL VICTIMS

Grenfell Tower on the morning of 14 June, 2017
Grenfell Tower on the morning of 14 June, 2017

The whole country was shocked by the scale of the Grenfell Tower fire in June. But the spirit of the public came through thick and fast. Millions of pounds were donated to the victims, including £20,000 from the Firefighters 100 Lottery.

RAFT

A RAFT researcher at work
A RAFT researcher at work

The Restoration of Appearance and Function Trust, better known as RAFT, is a charity that undertakes groundbreaking medical research into skin reconstruc­tion so that people with serious burns can regain their quality of life, independence and dignity. “RAFT receives no government funding so relies solely on the generosity of its supporters,” says the charity’s fundraising manager Sarah Levene. “We will be able to help more burns victims now, thanks to the FBU’s kind support and friendship. The donation of £10,000 will help us develop our life-changing treatments faster.”

SUPPORTER BENEFITS

Buying a lottery ticket also means you can get a 15% discount on rooms at any branch of Brook Hotels. The hotel chain said it was honoured to work with the Firefighters 100 Lottery and looks forward to welcoming visitors for discounted stays. Visit Brook Hotels website for more details and quote FF100LOT when booking.

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