Andrew's Story

Andrew first began fundraising aged 14 when, in September 2002 he and his mother Ann was involved in the launch of the Oxford Mail’s original £15million fundraising campaign to build the specialist Oxford Children’s Hospital, which opened in January 2007.

Giving back - A "thank you"

It was this appeal and his own personal motivation to give back to “thank” the childhood medical teams for his treatment he received, which first drove Andy into wanting to raise funds as a pupil at St Birinus School in Didcot, for the building of the children’s hospital.

The amazing Oxford healthcare teams ultimately saved his life twice over, once at birth after he was cared for in the neonatal care unit (NCU) in his first few days of life after being born with a brain injury, and again aged 12 after enduring brain surgery. Raising funds at school was his way to repay his debt of gratitude back to the Oxford doctors who cared for, helped and treated him.

Inspiring others to help in his fundraising mission

During his time at the school he led and inspired the school’s efforts in his fundraising mission to give back to the Oxford Children’s Hospital which he also later carried on and inspired the sixth form whilst studying for his A-Levels, and motivated the Didcot Girls’ School, to also get on board.

He raised nearly £15,000 combined with the two school communities.

His mission being recognised

St Birinus School along with Andrew’s name is displayed on a glass plaque of recognition inside the hospital’s atrium with hundreds of others, including celebrities Jason Donovan.

Andrew was involved in raising significant sums of over £5,000 plus in the building funding appeal for the Oxford Children’s Hospital, which was officially opened by the late Queen Elizabeth II and the late Prince Phillip, Duke of Edinburgh in November 2008.

Andrews fights strong against his disability

Despite living daily life with a brain injury, Andrew fights strong against his disability which often leaves him suffering chronic fatigue, debilitating headaches, impaired cognitive function and mobility. But he continues undeterred to continue helping others in need – be it children’s, health or disability causes or others requiring help and support.

22 years of fundraising and over £115k for Oxford Children's Hospital

Over two dedicated decades of tireless and relentless fundraising saw Andy and Play2Give reach a momentous landmark raised for the Children’s Hospital by April 2023.

Now, over £115,000 has been raised since 2002, and last year the lifetime total was celebrated by the hospital charity, hospital staff, our team and supporters.

Two decades of charitable giving

Now, in over two decades, of tireless, dedicated and passionate fundraising through a catalogue of events and the value of presents raised by his annual “Sleigh2Give” drive across 22 years he has raised over £500,000 and continually rising for good causes across the county.

And all thanks to a team of volunteers and the Oxfordshire community of supporters who rally behind and get involved in his fundraising endeavours which continue to inspire!

Comments from the local community...

“Andrew is an exceptional charity leader whose passion for making a positive impact in our community, is truly inspiring. His strategic planning abilities have been instrumental in guiding Play2Give from its founding to its status as a trusted local charity.

“One of Andrew’s greatest strengths is his democratic style of leadership, which fosters collaboration and empowers team members to contribute their ideas and expertise. By unleashing volunteers’ potential, Play2Give has been able to change, transform, and save lives across Oxfordshire.

“Andrew’s dedication to serving others and his unwavering commitment to creating meaningful change make him an invaluable asset to any team or cause.”

- Matthew Norris-Silva, Vice-Chair of Play2Give

Recognised for his fundraising efforts

Due to his sheer dedication, tireless and selfless giving back from his heart over the years, he has also been recognised at other levels including nationally becoming an Ambassador in July 2019 for the British Citizen Awards,after receiving a BCA medal of honour at the Palace of Westminster in July 2017 for voluntary and charitable service.

The High Sheriff of Oxfordshire gave him a High Sheriff Award in March 2020 for outstanding voluntary work, and in 2022 he received a Special Recognition Award in the Didcot Town Community Awards.

Andrew's Honours