LEADING retailer, Musgrave NI, has reached a massive fundraising milestone, raising more than £2.5 million for local charity partner Action Cancer.  Pictured is Musgrave NI Sales Director Nigel Maxwell with Chief Executive of Action Cancer, Gareth Kirk. Picture by Darren Kidd / Press Eye

LEADING retailer, Musgrave NI, has reached a massive fundraising milestone, raising more than £2.5 million for local charity partner Action Cancer.

The donation, believed to be one of the largest amounts ever raised by a company for an individual charity in Northern Ireland, was raised by SuperValu and Centra retailers, along with Musgrave head office staff over the past 15 years.

The funds have gone towards the Action Cancer Big Bus screening and health promotion unit and the charity’s health promotion programme for schools.

Since the launch of the hi-tech Big Bus mobile in 2006, which SuperValu helped to pay for, Action Cancer has provided over 55,000 breast screenings and 20,000 health checks on board, free of charge.

SuperValu stores have now raised £1.5 million for the Big Bus, and continue to keep it on the road by helping to cover the annual running costs.

Centra retailers have raised £1 million for Action Cancer’s Health Action programme for schools, and 500,000 young people have already benefitted from health education sessions. The project aims to reduce future cancer incidence by making a positive impact on the attitudes of young people towards healthier lifestyles.

Musgrave NI Managing Director, Michael McCormack, said: “One of our key company values at Musgrave is to create and maintain long-term, stable relationships. There is no better example of this than the 15 year partnership that Musgrave and our independent retailers across the SuperValu and Centra brands have with Action Cancer.

“A big thank you to our SuperValu and Centra retailers, their staff and customers, who have raised a phenomenal £2.5 million to help fund both the Big Bus visits and health promotion schools programme. This ensures Action Cancer can continue to deliver life-saving work across communities in Northern Ireland,” he added.

Action Cancer CEO, Gareth Kirk, said, “Through a partnership spanning 15 years, Musgrave NI’s support is an integral part of Action Cancer’s mobile resource centre, the Big Bus, and our Health Action Schools Programme.

Through this invaluable support, Action Cancer can continue to provide digital breast screening for women aged 40 – 49 and 70+ (outside the NHS screening range), M.O.T. health checks for men and women, and health and lifestyle advice on the Big Bus. Every year the Big Bus, sponsored by SuperValu and its independent retailers, travels to over 235 locations throughout Northern Ireland.

Action Cancer’s Health Schools Programme, supported by Centra NI, aims to empower and educate individuals and their communities to make informed, positive healthy decisions. At Action Cancer our two key health promotion messages are prevention and early detection.

With thanks to an abundance of fundraising activities and the generosity of both staff and customers Musgrave NI have broken through a huge total to date of £2.5M!” he added.

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