An inspirational Nuthall pensioner who has helped raise an astonishing £415,000 for Cancer Research UK over three decades has been recognised for her incredible dedication.
Jessie Clarke,87,of Edward Road, has been given a coveted Flame of Hope accolade and an Honorary Fellowship accreditation to celebrate her 32-year involvement with the charity.
She was described as “a great ambassador and a true inspiration” by Myles Godfrey, Cancer Research UK’s regional manager, during a fundraising event at which she was an unsuspecting special guest.
Mr Godfrey said: “Jessie is exceptional and her efforts over a long period of time have been deservedly recognised at the highest level.”
Jessie has been supporting Cancer Research since 1981 and as a survivor of the disease wanted to “give something back” and so decided to join the Eastwood and Greasley committee of the charity,becoming chairman of the group just a year later.
After serving on that for 16-years, she embarked upon a new challenge by setting up the Nuthall and Kimberley Cancer Research UK local committee and in her role as chairman she has inspired her supportive team of members who she describes as her “fundraising family”.
Becky Elphick , the charity’s local fundraising manager, who nominated Jessie for the prestigious award, was generous in her praise.
“Jessie is extremely professional and always thanks her supporters in writing or personally,” said Becky. “In recent times she has battled against her own health problems and has had to cope with the sad passing of her husband, Jack, to whom she was married for 65-years.
“ Following an operation for a new hip Jessie took part in the Nottingham Relay For Life , as a survivor. She is one of our organisation’s most inspirational fundraisers and is a shining example to one and all.”
In an emotional speech Jessie paid tribute to her “fantastic fundraising team”.
“This is as much their award as it is mine,” she said. “It is a privilege to be chairman of such a wonderful group of caring ladies who have never failed to fulfil my expectations of them. They have always gone the extra mile to ensure that our efforts for Cancer Research have been the best!”.