It has been a pretty momentous week so far, and it’s only Thursday. On Sunday, we launched “Choosing to Give…” to honour Charlotte Bevan’s birthdate, 13 July, which coinicides pretty much with the gestation of Charlotte’s Helix as a project in the minds of three very significant women: Charlotte, Laura (Collins) Lyster-Mensh, and Professor Cindy Bulik. And then yesterday, Wednesday 16 July, we took Charlotte’s Helix to Westminster, where three Members of Parliament welcomed us inside as they “chose to give…” direct support, in one form or another, to this project.
Brooks Newmark, member for Braintree and newly named Minister for Civil Society, donated his DNA to Charlotte’s Helix as the former sufferer of an eating disorder. A truly honourable act on his part, and Brooks is leading from the front in practical and personal manner as he joins the UK government as the man responsible for civil society issues, including charitable enterprise.
“Will my right hon. Friend commend the work of Charlotte’s Helix and all those who have been brave enough to speak out about their struggles with eating disorders…?”
David Cameron thanked Caroline for her question, and the answer came: yes he will
“I commend the bravery of all those who have spoken out about their experience with eating disorders. It is not an easy thing to do. We need to learn more about these conditions so that we can provide the right kind of support.”
Thank you! To all of the MP’s who supported us yesterday and who "chose to give…" something of themselves: Brooks, Caroline and Dominic gave their support willingly and openly, and we are very grateful to them all. Thank you also to the wonderful Kings College London team, presided over by Dr Gerome Breen, who pulled out all the stops to make this event happen within the corridors of power (more corridors than you might think!). And last, but by no means least, thank you to the delightful staff at Brooks Newmark’s office, for all their assistance in making this happen, ably assisted in their turn by the staff at the offices of both Caroline Nokes and Dominic Raab; it was a magnificent day, and we couldn’t have asked for more generous, supportive and gracious hosts, and ones whose courage to speak out and to “give” to Charlotte’s Helix will inspire many more to come forward.