In 2021, Liz Curtis, founder of charity The Lily Foundation, was awarded an MBE in the Queen’s Birthday Honours list for her work for people with mitochondrial disease. On Tuesday, 18 October 2022, Liz, who lives in Warlingham, visited Windsor Castle to receive her medal from Princess Anne.
Liz, with help from her family, set up The Lily Foundation in 2007, after her eight-month-old daughter died from the rare genetic condition, which affects one baby born every day in the UK. Since then, Liz and her team have raised £8.5m to support affected families and fund scientific research into mitochondrial disease, and the foundation has become the UK’s leading ‘mito’ charity.
In 2015, the charity successfully lobbied for a change in the law, meaning that a pioneering IVF treatment could be used to help women with mito have children without the condition.
The Lily Foundation, which counts comedian Peter Kay among its supporters, is currently celebrating its 15th anniversary and has launched ‘15More’: a campaign that aims to raise awareness of mitochondrial disease. It is asking that you either tell 15 new people about the condition or donate £15 to help fund further research. You can get involved by visiting The Lily Foundation's website.
(Above: Lily Curtis with daughter Lily in hospital in 2007)