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CooperBurnett announce that it's concentrating its fundraising efforts to support a young man who needs vital treatment for brain cancer.

CooperBurnett has announced that it is concentrating its fundraising efforts over the next two years to support a young man called Oli Hilsdon who needs vital treatment for brain cancer.


The firm involves the whole team when selecting a charity to support. Suggestions are sought, a short list is created and a vote is taken. Once a charity is chosen, the firm’s charity committee, consisting of Katie Hilsdon, Gareth Warner and Lisa Connolly, drives the fundraising.


Oli, who is Katie Hilsdon’s cousin, had just graduated from Cambridge when, in August 2014, he had a seizure completely out of the blue. Tests were run and he was diagnosed with an aggressive brain tumour and given the devastating prognosis of 12 to 18 months to live.


Oli proved the doctors wrong and, after undergoing treatment was given the all clear. He then went on to fundraise for brain tumour research himself, including running the London Marathon in 2016. 


Unfortunately, last year more tests revealed the tumour had returned and Oli has recently undergone brain surgery to remove the affected tumour and has embarked on more chemotherapy treatment.


Oli’s oncologist would like him to receive a vaccine made from a culture developed from the tumour they have removed (DC Vax-L) and now the family are looking to fund this vaccine, which is not available on the NHS. 


His Mother, Jayne, says: “Oli is the most positive person I know. Not once has he complained about his treatment or said ‘why me’. He leaves a little bit of his heart with every person he meets.”


In the meantime, Oli is busy planning his future, with his marriage to fiancée Gigi next summer.


Keen to start their fundraising, the charity team at CooperBurnett has already unveiled its ‘charity challenge’ for 2019, which will be cycling from London to Paris in 24 hours – a challenge which is usually undertaken over three to four days. 


“We will be drawing up a training plan ahead of the ride in May and there will be a lot of support available for anyone who, like me, is less than confident on the road,” says Katie Hilsdon, Associate Solicitor working within the Corporate team. “We will be organising monthly cycles so we can get used to cycling together and build confidence on the road. We will also be organising weekly gym sessions to increase our strength and help get cycle fit.”


Those team members who don’t feel up to the road trip to Paris are being given the opportunity to take part in a relay race on a static bike in the CooperBurnett office to see which team ‘gets to Paris’ first. 


“My Aunt and Uncle are overwhelmed that CooperBurnett will be supporting Oli’s fundraising and I am so grateful to all my colleagues,” says Katie Hilsdon. “Enough money has already been raised to make the first couple of injections and we are now putting plans in place to add to these funds.”


Adds Victoria Sampson, a Partner at CooperBurnett and Head of Corporate and Commercial Services: “I think everybody here was struck by Oli’s story and his persistence to keep going, even when things are tough. His connection with Katie has also made it more real for us all. Everyone is looking forward to coming together as a team to raise funds for Oli’s all-important treatment.”


Click here to find out more and support CooperBurnett in its fundraising for Oli:

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September 13, 2018
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