David Sangster - Fundraiser of the Year 2016 The prestigious Alex Flynn award is given to a supporter or advocate of The Cure Parkinson's Trust (CPT) who has significantly raised the profile of Parkinson’s or 'gone the extra mile' to raise funds. We are delighted to announce David Sangster as the 2016 winner this year - David has certainly gone beyond that extra mile..! David has been credited for his extraordinary efforts to raise awareness of Parkinson’s particularly for those of a working age. Among David’s many achievements is the creation and development of the Young Parkinson’s Network which has brought many people with Parkinson's (PwP) together. “David’s profile in the Parkinson’s community has gone from 0-60 in 3.2 seconds. He is a fantastic ambassador whose actions are always for the greater good rather than being individually motivated. I have no doubt that David will become a legend of Parkinson’s advocacy” Tom Isaacs - President & Co-founder, CPT __________________________________________________________________________ David found the period as a newly diagnosed PwP a challenging one. Spending many hours online investigating various medications, treatments and advice about Parkinson's, he began to discover a community of other patients looking for the same things and going through the same experiences. David found himself moving toward a 'better place' - finding strength within his family and his work life, David began to reach out to other PwP in a similar situation. “I was amazed and humbled. I wasn’t in this alone and more importantly; neither were they. This experience felt like my calling or that in some way, it was meant to happen this way.” Discovering this growing online community, he organised his very first Google Hangout with other recently diagnosed people with Parkinson's. He was a guest on BBC Radio 2 with Jeremy Vine and also featured on BBC local television news. The support and messages he received from hundreds of people living with Parkinson’s, care partners, family members and patient organisations was overwhelming. Determined to support others facing a diagnosis of Parkinson’s, David founded and continues to manage a network group which helps connect people of a similar age living with the disease. He continues to work very closely to address the awareness of those PwP who are at working age creating and developing the Young Parkinsons Network which has brought many together as a community finding answers to questions and support in what is a life changing disease. David travels extensively through the UK to promote awareness of Young Onset Parkinson's, encouraging people to engage with each other through vlogs and online forums and in turn raising funds for CPT. David and his wife Jane hosted a ‘Pints for Parkinson’s’ party in their home town of Bolton in support of CPT raising £2,500. The event also raised considerable awareness about young on-set PD within their local community. In 2016 David travelled to the World Parkinsons Congress in Portland, Oregon and presented to a large audience of attendees on behalf of CPT. More recently, David was filmed for our BBC Lifeline appeal with former Scotland Rugby captain and British Lion Gavin Hastings - the results of which were phenomenal with donations and pledges being one of the most significant! We are delighted to acknowledge David with this award and look forward to continuing to work closely with him in the future. Congratulations David - you are a truly deserving winner! “Knowing The Cure Parkinson’s Trust are funding ground-breaking research focused on a cure, has had a really positive impact on me and my sense of hope for the future.” We received some incredible and worthy nominees for the award this year - all of whom were truly remarkable and made our choice all the more difficult. See our other nominees here.