Little Isla gets life-changing treatment thanks to industry’s generosity

The two-year-old granddaughter of LCRIG Chair and industry veteran Martin Duffy has undertaken potentially life-changing treatment in the United States, thanks to her grandfather’s cycling skills and the fundraising efforts of the highways and transport technology industries.

Isla was born with cerebral palsy and cannot sit independently, crawl or walk.  However Stem Cell treatment clinical trials showed the potential of stem cell treatment which is available in the US. Isla was selected for treatment after tests showed a match with the cells taken from her baby brother, Leo.

She’s been treated by global leader in this field of research, Dr Joanne Kurtzberg.

The total cost of treatment is around £25,000, and all but £2,000 of this was raised by Martin Duffy undertaking a 100-mile sponsored cycle ride, along with the innovative “Give a Cone a Cuddle” fundraiser led by independent highways sector consultant Neil Levett.

Mr Levett devised a programme where supporting companies would donate £500 each and in exchange receive a cuddly road cone which they will display on their stands at the major Highways UK event at Birmingham’s NEC next month.  The event organiser, Terrapin, has also committed to publish an “Isla’s Trail” of contributing companies who are exhibiting.

The supporting companies have their logo displayed prominently on the fundraising webpage and are entitled to display their support for the fundraising efforts using the exclusive, specially designed logo, too.

Those supporting the initiative are LCRIG, Kiely Group, Associated Asphalt, CLM, Clearway, Messagemaker Displays, Rennicks, Solar Gates UK, Roadmender, RSTA, Westcotec, WJ Group. Asphalt Group Ltd, Henry Williams and Son, Thermal Road Repairs, Connected Safety Net, the IHE and Highway Care.

Could your business be one of the last four needed to reach the target? It’ll cost just £500 to help Isla, and in return you’ll get to give a cone a cuddle.

In an industry-first move, all the sector’s key media brands have got together and put their competitive trials and tribulations to one side to collaborate in promoting Isla’s cause. The objective is that, Highways Magazine,, Traffex and Highways UK will jointly promote Martin’s fundraising, and continue to give updates on how Isla is progressing with her treatment.

(Picture sent by Martin Duffy)


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