We are so excited today to report that our volunteer fundraisers, 11-year-old Ruben and Elena Evans-Guillen, are the youngest recipients of the Queen’s Birthday Honours in her Platinum Jubilee year.
The Warrington-based twins have been awarded British Empire Medals for their services to fundraising, having raised an incredible £46,000 for local charities, including MedEquip4Kids. Ruben and Elena decided to begin their charitable activities at just six years old, and for the following five years they have dedicated the majority of their weekends to challenge events such as running and trekking.
In addition to the British Empire Medals, earlier this year the twins receive a Pride of Manchester Award in the Young Fundraisers category. In 2021 they were winners of the prestigious Diana Award, which recognises young people who have made exceptional contributions to society.
Ruben and Elena have both been diagnosed with Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD). Over the years they have learned to manage their condition and channel their incredible energy into activities that benefit their community, whilst also speaking out in the media to challenge negative perceptions of ADHD.
Ruben and Elena became part of the MedEquip4Kids community in April 2020 at the beginning of the Covid-19 pandemic. The twins helped us to secure a grant of £5,000 to provide sensory toys, games and art materials for several Child and Adolescent Mental Health Services in the North West. They went on to help us to achieve funding for our brand new website.
During 2020 they completed both the Summer and Winter Superhero Challenge 100km cycles for MedEquip4Kids, securing funds for two lung suction machines for ISCAN (Integrated Service for Children with Additional Needs), which cares for 655 children in Tameside and Glossop. These machines are benefiting children like Heidi who have brain injuries, lung diseases or conditions such as cystic fibrosis.
In 2021 they embarked on their 100 Acts of Kindness “Be a Good Egg for the NHS” campaign. The funds raised helped MedEquip4Kids buy a wireless heart monitor for the birth centre at Warrington Hospital.
Catherine North, fundraiser at MedEquip4Kids, says: “We are so very excited for the twins, whose award is so incredibly well deserved. They are such inspiring and engaging young people and we are very proud and grateful for their contributions to our cause to benefit children’s healthcare. A special thank you also to their dad Mark who has worked tirelessly to support their activities to help us.”