The OSCAR campaign (The Ocean and Shipping Community Advancing Children’s Health and Research) is an innovative fundraising partnership uniting the international shipping community to raise funds at Great Ormond Street Hospital (GOSH) and the UCL Great Ormond Street Institute of Child Health (ICH).
Background of the OSCAR campaign
The campaign is the inspiration of Phil Parry, Chairman of Spinnaker, whose son Oscar received life-saving care at GOSH. Oscar had leukaemia twice and endured three transplants before being cured by some pioneering research.
Since its inception in 2011, the OSCAR campaign raised over £2million, helping to refurbish vital facilities at the hospital, and funding pioneering research into childhood cancers and immune diseases at GOSH and the UCL Great Ormond Street Institute of Child Health.
One of the biggest fundraisers for the OSCAR Campaign is the OSCAR Dragon Boat Race, held in London every September. Find out more here: https://www.gosh.org/get-involved/fundraising-events/oscar-dragon-boat-race/
“Thanks to a lot of great people in shipping, the OSCAR Campaign has raised more than £2 million to help advance the work of the leading children’s bone marrow transplant and cellular medicine experts.
The simplest way to describe what we fund is ‘lab bench to bedside’ medicine – treatments that weren’t available yesterday, which may save children’s lives today and go on to save more lives tomorrow from what we learn. That’s how Oscar himself was saved – the treatment pioneered on him is now routinely used to save others.
It’s incredible – we are now able to use patients’ own immune systems to target their cancers. It’s like taking off the cancer brakes and enabling patients’ cells to re-see the cancer. A new ‘OSCAR Research Fellow’ will develop this work. It needs to be rolled out for more diseases and constantly adapted to an evolving enemy.
OSCAR funds are crucial to this work. Without them, there would be no new research fellow and the Great Ormond Street BMT team’s ability to disseminate its work worldwide, train its team and learn from the work of others would be severely restricted.”
Phil Parry, OSCAR Chair