The Lauren Currie Twilight Foundation is a charity committed to providing support for people affected by Vasculitis. Since 2010, sustainable support services and educational initiatives, progressive campaigns, and high-profile events have made LCTF a driving force for the vasculitis community in Scotland and the UK. The charity has raised over £800,000 to fund patient support, awareness campaigning, and medical research.
The 23rd October 2010 will forever be a date etched painfully in our memory. Lauren, our only child, had just turned 15 when she died from Wegener’s Granulomatosis (now called Granulomatosis with Polyangiitis, a variant of Vasculitis). There are very few things worse in life than being told that your daughter, the absolute centre and light of your life, is going to die. Harder still to face her inquisitive eyes moments later and appear confident and reassuring as you try to cram a lifetime of love into a few short moments.
Fortunately Lauren was unaware she was dying and tried bravely and uncomplainingly, while undergoing so many gruelling procedures, to fight her way back to health. Her own determination and positive attitude are what inspires us today to leave a lasting legacy for our beautiful daughter.
The foundation we have created in Lauren’s name also reflects her last obsession – The Twilight Saga. The novels on the bookcase are well thumbed and have been read many times from cover to cover; a sea of posters covers her bedroom walls; a 6ft cardboard cut out of Edward Cullen, which was often planted outside our bedroom door as she delighted in hearing us jump in fright, still stands menacingly in the corner; books, calendars, action figures, t-shirts, cinema tickets, games…. We refused to call our new puppy Edward, so a compromise of Eddie was reached. It seemed only fitting then that the name Twilight was incorporated into the charity. This is Lauren’s charity, founded through our love of our daughter and everything she represented.
She was a bright, intelligent, bubbly, fun-loving girl with an infectious laugh that affected all around her. It is that daily infusion of hysterical laughter which still rings in our heads. Now… the silence is deafening. There is a huge, vacuous hole which can never be filled.
The days that followed Lauren’s death were spent scanning the internet looking at signs, symptoms and treatments of Vasculitis, only to discover quite incredulously, that this was not a terminal illness. That may actually have been easier to digest. Our beautiful daughter need not have died had her individual symptoms of rhinitis, frequent bouts of tonsillitis, joint pain and lethargy been pieced together.
With this fact in mind, we pledged to ourselves and to Lauren’s memory to support others suffering from Vasculitis. Her charity now raises vital awareness throughout the United Kingdom, as well as producing guidance and support materials for patients with all forms of Vasculitis. It also funds guidance for health professionals, delivers national support groups and funds scientific research.
Her charity has been established since October 2010 and has been instrumental in helping us come to terms with Lauren’s death. Seeing other patients receiving support and assistance from Lauren’s charity makes all the hard work and tears in building it so worthwhile. We have been incredibly moved by the support that we have received from people who have been touched by Lauren’s story and the subsequent work of the charity. Thank you, your support has been vital.
Dr Hilary Jones
Dr Hilary is Health Editor to ITV’s Good Morning Britain, a general practioner and author of many health publications. Dr Hilary Jones joined Lauren’s charity as a patron and supports the work of The Lauren Currie Twilight Foundation in raising awareness of vasculitis and in supporting and educating patients on the disease.
Lauren’s favourite band Biffy Clyro have been patrons of The Lauren Currie Twilight Foundation since 2010. Formed in Kilmarnock, Biffy have a worldwide following and have signed and supplied auction items which has helped raise money for vasculitis patient support and research.
Kirsty McCabe has been a familiar face in the world of weather for over a decade. A fully qualified forecaster, she has presented the weather on the BBC, GMTV, ITV, Channel 5 and The Weather Channel. She currently presents and produces the weather for Sky News. Kirsty has two young children and writes regular columns about all aspects of parenting for Junior magazine and other publications.
John Watson OBE
John Watson is one of the country’s foremost and most admired business figure in Scotland and beyond. John remains deeply committed to philanthropy and helping businesses led by entrepreneurs to grow and flourish.
The charity is supervised by a board of Trustees. Our Board has representatives from Lauren’s family, the patient community, business community, and the expertise of vasculitis specialists.
Dr Neil Basu
Senior Clinical Lecturer at the University of Aberdeen, where Neil leads a multidisciplinary programme of patient centred vasculitis research, and Consultant Rheumatologist at NHS Grampian, where Neil runs an almost unique vasculitis clinic in partnership with renal colleagues.
Prof David Kluth
Honoury Lecturer at Edinburgh University and Consultant Nephrologist. Leads the Edinburgh Vasculitis Clinic in Edinburgh and vasculitis research studies.
Dr Brian Nelly
Honoury Lecturer at Glasgow University and Consultant Respiratory Consultant at the Glasgow Royal Infirmary