Leona Rankin lost her fiancé to sarcoma after a 10 year fight with the disease. Inspired by his life she set up ‘The Boom Foundation’ to support specialised care in Northern Ireland.
Leona has raised £250,000, splitting funds across the Sarcoma UK charity and her own initiatives. She regularly runs support groups and information days and has established The Boom Foundation as the main referral charity supporting people living with sarcoma in Northern Ireland.
In a personal letter to Leona, Prime Minister Theresa May said:
“The Boom Foundation is changing the lives of hundreds of people living with sarcoma across Northern Ireland. Your tireless dedication to this cause is a wonderful tribute to Philip’s life.”
“I am truly overwhelmed at receiving the Point of Light award and am so grateful for the recognition that The Boom Foundation will receive from such a prestigious award. When The Boom Foundation was set up in 2013, my hope was that it would help patients in some small way and that gaps in the support system in Northern Ireland would be filled. Now, almost four years on, the charity has grown and has made a real difference to the lives of sarcoma patients, in a way that I could never have imagined.
We are privileged to be working closely with health professionals in Northern Ireland which means that we provide support in the right way to patients and their families. Boom is a charity run by a team of 4 trustees and a small number of volunteers. In receiving this award, it acknowledges the incredible work that they each do in their own time and I would like to take this opportunity to thank them for their support and for all those who fundraise and very kindly donate to Boom. Thank you once again for this honourable award.”