Katherine Jenkins (pictured), Tracey Ullman, and magician Julius Dein are among the celebrities photographed by Rankin for the launch of a new blood cancer charity.
Facebook’s Vice President for EMEA Lady Nicola Mendelsohn CBE today launches the Follicular Lymphoma Foundation: a charity dedicated to helping people with the currently incurable blood cancer.
The charity will fund research to find new treatments and cures for Follicular Lymphoma, and support patients and their families affected by the disease by creating information resources. It also aims to raise awareness of this invisible disease and to help people find communities that offer support, like the Living with Follicular Lymphoma Facebook Group that Lady Mendelsohn helps run.
In its first three years, the charity aims to raise $20 million (c. £15.5m).
Lady Mendelsohn was herself diagnosed with the cancer in 2016. To mark the charity’s launch, she has teamed up with British fashion photographer Rankin, to capture a series of images which will help to make this invisible disease, visible. The images feature popular British celebrities with purple veins on their faces and necks, to mimic the dye that is used to reveal the condition.
Nicola Mendelsohn said:
“Despite hundreds of thousands of people living with Follicular Lymphoma it has a very low profile and there has been comparatively very little investment into the disease.
“An average 20-year survival from diagnosis might look good on paper, but I’m in my 40s with a husband and four beautiful children that I want to see grow up. It’s not enough, and I’m not satisfied when we know that the knowledge and technology is available that puts a cure within our grasp.”
Dr Jessica Okosun, Clinical Senior Lecturer at Barts Cancer Institute and Consultant Haematologist at St Bartholomew’s Hospital and Scientific Advisor to the Foundation added:
“The amount of research funding into follicular lymphoma has comparatively decreased over time and, despite advances, the medical and research community still don’t understand follicular lymphoma as well as we would like, or well enough to have identified cures for all patients.
“So the launch of the Follicular Lymphoma Foundation – with its aim of funding new research, particularly at a time when technological advancements are at its most exciting – is very welcome.
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