Wellingborough woman honoured by the PM for setting up Crazy Hats charity

Charity founder Glennis Hooper (middle) ahead of yesterday's walk
Charity founder Glennis Hooper (middle) ahead of yesterday's walk

The woman behind the Crazy Hats charity has been honoured by the Prime Minister with a Points of Light award.

Glennis Hooper founded the Crazy Hats Breast Cancer Appeal in 2001 and yesterday saw it’s 15th annual sponsored walk taking place at Wicksteed Park.

She first started the appeal after being diagnosed with breast cancer herself.

And under her leadership the charity funds all stages of breast cancer support in Northamptonshire, including the purchase of specialist equipment for hospitals across the area.

She and the Crazy Hats team have raised more than £2.6 million to date and attracted the support of leading medics in the field as well as Avon Cosmetics, who have sponsored initiatives including an office revamp and the charity’s therapy service.

Glennis, who is from Wellingborough, is the latest recipient of a Points of Light award, which recognises outstanding individual volunteers, people who are making a change in their community and inspiring others.

Each day, someone, somewhere in the country is selected to receive the award to celebrate their remarkable achievements.

In a personal letter to Glennis, the Prime Minister Theresa May said: “Through the Crazy Hats Breast Cancer Appeal you have done so much to support breast cancer care in your area.

“The more than £2 million you have raised is changing lives across Northamptonshire.”

Glennis is the 719th winner of the Points of Light award which has been developed in partnership with the Points of Light programme in the USA and was first established by President George H. W. Bush.

More than 5,000 US Points of Light have been awarded and both President George H. W. Bush and President Barack Obama publicly supported the partnership with Points of Light UK when it was launched in 2014, which honours shining examples of volunteering across the country.

Regardless of whether it’s a doctor restoring monuments in her free time, a father teaching young people life skills, or a musician giving a voice to lonely people, the award honours shining examples of volunteering across the UK.

Glennis said: “It is an honour to receive a Points of Light award and for the charity to be recognised for the work we do in Northamptonshire to enhance facilities in the breast clinics, breast screening, oncology and breast reconstruction departments at our two general hospitals as well as providing support for breast cancer patients and their carers.

“I am immensely proud and feel privileged to spearhead such an amazing team of volunteers who are as passionate and dedicated as I am about making a difference to those going through treatment for breast cancer.

“Now in our 15th year, and having raised over £2.5 million, we never thought we would have come so far, but we are ambitious, we have fun and know that our work must go on – our dream being to establish a purpose-built breast cancer support centre; a centre in our county that is so desperately needed.

“Having had breast cancer myself, I, as a headteacher in my previous life, want to ensure that all breast cancer patients today have the best experience possible throughout treatment and beyond.”