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Chamber chief’s pledge to raise money for baby boxes appeal

North East England Chamber of Commerce chief executive John McCabe is raising money for the Children’s Foundation by taking part in the Great North Run.

The Charity’s Make a Million ‘MaM’ appeal aims to provide every child born in the region in the next five years with a MaM baby box, which can be used as a cot and is full of practical useful baby products including play mat, toys, books and resources.

John McCabe said: “I’m delighted to be running for this Children’s Foundation appeal. As a proud dad of three children I know how important it is for babies to get the best start in life.

“Far too many North East children are born into poverty and our region has fallen behind others in terms of school attainment and health inequalities. To help combat this, the MaM baby box has great ways to stimulate a baby’s mental development. Positive experiences early in life are closely associated with better performances at school, good emotional development, improved work outcomes and better lifelong health. Tackling these issues is vital to levelling up. These boxes will also be a huge help to families struggling with the cost of living.”

Sean Soulsby, chief executive, The Children’s Foundation said: “Caring for babies is a really important, but very difficult job, and it takes the whole community to make a difference. Throughout the pandemic babies and new parents have often been overlooked. Our baby boxes are unique and a first to take a developmental approach to the child. We want to remind new parents and families that they are cared for, and to promote a great start for all children born here in the North East. Any donations to John’s fundraising from individuals and companies would be really appreciated.”

This year’s Great North Run takes place on Sunday, 11 September and many runners help to raise substantial sums for charity.

Sir Brendan Foster said: “The Children’s Foundation is a brilliant North East charity and their support for families has never been needed more than it is today. When John told me he was doing this I immediately offered him the number 30 for this year’s Great North Run as a mark of the 30th anniversary of the Foundation’s campaign.  He might start in 30th place but let’s see where he finishes!”

The link to donate to John McCabe’s fundraising is here.