April 13, 2023 2.30 pm This story is over 7 months old

Lincoln RAF Sergeant shortlisted for national charity award

A fundraising team from RAF Digby also shortlisted

A Lincoln RAF Sergeant with Motor Neurone Disease has been shortlisted for a national charity award in recognition of his fundraising efforts.

Sgt Andrew Merrett was diagnosed with MND in 2021 and runs using specially adapted equipment to support his arms.

Andrew, a Sergeant at RAF Waddington, raised £3,600 by taking part in the 2022 London Marathon, which he completed in four hours and 50 minutes.

He also took part in the Waddington Jubilee 10k to raise the profile of the RAF Benevolent Fund as the charity will be there not only to support Andrew, but his family too in the future following his diagnosis.

Andrew has now been shortlisted in the ‘Above and Beyond’ Category of the RAF Benevolent Fund’s annual awards, which will take place at Plaisterers’ Hall in London on Thursday, April 27.

Air Vice-Marshal Chris Elliot, Chief Executive at the RAF Benevolent Fund, said: “Sgt Andrew Merrett’s efforts are truly inspirational and embodies the spirit of the Above & Beyond category.

“The RAF Benevolent Fund exists to support the whole of the RAF Family, whenever they need us. But we wouldn’t be able to provide this level of assistance without dedicated fundraisers like Andrew who go the extra mile to support our mission.”

A team from RAF Digby have also been shortlisted for the ‘Fundraising Team of the Year’ category.

Team 54 is made up of 14 personnel from 54SU, who completed a fitness fundraising challenge throughout February 2022 to celebrate the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee.

Each member of the 54SU RAF Digby team completed 70km per week throughout the month by either running, walking or cycling. As well as doing this, team members were also set the individual challenge of completing 4 x 70 press ups, sit ups, lunges, burpees and squats.

The team managed to achieve a total distance of 3070.9km and raised £1,190 for the RAF Benevolent Fund.

Sergeant Ian Walker: “All members of this fundraising team have primary roles in a specialist Unit where they contribute to a 24-hour shift pattern in support of high tempo operational activities.

“Despite this, they have managed to give up their time outside of work to complete a physically demanding challenge to raise funds and awareness for the Fund.”

The RAF Benevolent Fund Awards is now in its 11th year, celebrating the outstanding contributions of the fundraisers, volunteers and partners who support the charity.

The RAF Benevolent Fund is the Royal Air Force’s leading welfare charity, providing practical, financial, and emotional support to RAF personnel, veterans, and their partners and dependants.

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