A Great Barr family who have shown an amazing commitment to Diabetes UK through raising money for the charity and also raising awareness of Type 1 diabetes have been recognised with a national volunteering award.
Cheryl and Tim Lewis (pictured above second left and far right) and their son Nathan are passionate about raising funds for research to help find a cure for Type 1 diabetes. Their inspiration is their son Michael, who passed away in 2015 from complications related to his Type 1 diabetes.
The family, who along with fellow trustees Steven Roberts and Chris Edwards set up the Michael Lewis Foundation to raise funds and awareness of Type 1 diabetes, were presented with the UK Inspire Award for Fundraising at a special ceremony in Birmingham on 5 July, featuring a performance from reggae artist Apache Indian, famous for his top five hit Boom Shack-A-Lak.
Michael Lewis was 20 when he died and had lived with the condition since he was four years old. He lived life to the full and never let the condition prevent him from reaching his goals. His infectious personality lead him to inspire and motivate people to believe they can achieve whatever they desire.
As a family, we are honoured to receive this award, but nothing would have been possible without the fantastic love and dedication from all who have supported the foundation, in so many different ways. Our heartfelt thanks go out to you all #livelikemike.
The UK Inspire Awards recognise the invaluable contribution of the volunteers and groups that go above and beyond for people with diabetes. An independent panel chooses the finalists and winners in the six award categories from hundreds of nominations from communities across the country.
Peter Shorrick, Diabetes UK Midlands regional head and compere of this year’s national awards, said: “Every year, across the UK, thousands of people give their time to help provide support, fundraise for pioneering research and raise awareness of diabetes. The Inspire Awards offer the chance to recognise and celebrate their efforts. I can’t thank the Lewis family enough for their contribution to our work and the positive difference they have and are making to the lives of people living with diabetes in the local community.”
Apache Indian, who is celebrating his 25th year in the music industry, jetted in from New York to perform at the awards. He said: "It was great to be part of such of an inspirational event in my home town of Birmingham. As a parent of a son (21 year old Rajan) with Type 1 diabetes, and having met some volunteers who have gone the extra mile for Diabetes UK, it has made me want to continue my work with the charity. It was a privilege to perform here and meet everyone."