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Inspirational Young Scot finalist Ross Clift is keynote speaker at 2017 Glasgow Brain Game

Inspirational young fundraiser Ross Clift is the keynote speaker at the 2017 Glasgow Brain Game.

Over the past 18 months Ross, from Sandyhills in Glasgow, has dedicated his spare time to raising money and awareness for Marie Curie, the charity which helped care for his late mother Ann.

The 23-year-old personal trainer at Hilton Glasgow and his younger sister Caitlin organised a charity night which raised enough money to run Marie Curie’s Glasgow hospice on Christmas Day.

Ross – a finalist in the prestigious Young Scot awards – has bravely agreed to share his story with business leaders before they compete for the title of Scotland’s top business brains at The Hilton Glasgow on Thursday, October 12, from 7pm until midnight.

Explained Ross (pictured with his mum Ann, left, and sister Caitlin): “Last April, mum was diagnosed with Neuroendocrine cancer which is a very rare type of tumour. At first she reacted well to the radiotherapy and seemed to be heading in the right direction, but she had a seizure and was admitted to hospital in the June.

“After treatment in the Royal Infirmary and the Beatson, mum was eventually moved to Marie Curie’s Springburn Hospice. She loved it so much – from the nurses to the food to the views. It was a holiday away from the hospitals she had been in for over a month.

Unfortunately, just under four weeks later on August 10 Ann passed away aged just 47.

Ross continued: “Mum was surrounded by the comforts of the hospice, and the family had been made aware a week prior that she was deteriorating. Most of my family moved into the hospice for that week and we can’t thank the staff enough for what they did for us, making us feel as comfortable as possible.”

After Ann’s death, Ross and Caitlin founded a new volunteer group called Glasgow City to raise money and awareness for Marie Curie.

Ross added: “Being chosen as keynote speaker at the Glasgow Brain Game is an honour and a great opportunity to talk about the work done by Marie Curie.

“When my mum was being cared for at the hospice in Springburn, my sister and I realised how much work Marie Curie does to support the families as well as the patients.

“Family members often have to stay in the hospice for weeks at a time and it’s a great comfort to know that your bed is made up for you and there is someone to talk to.”

Despite everything the siblings have gone through, they want other people to have access to the support they received from Marie Curie.

Ross added: “When mum eventually passed away, it gave us that spurt to give something back. We don’t come to the hospice feeling sad that mum died. We just come here feeling that there’s more people we can help.”

Last year’s Glasgow Brain Game saw a record breaking £136,000 raised for Marie Curie and organisers hope to beat this total next month when over 40 high profile companies battle it out for the title of Scotland’s top business brains.

Morgan Stanley, Grant Thornton, STV and Arnold Clark are among the organisations who have already signed up to take part in the event when they hope to snatch the title from reigning champions Shepherd and Wedderburn.

This year’s fiendishly tricky black-tie quiz is being hosted by TV presenters Hazel Irvine and Rob Maclean at The Hilton Glasgow on Thursday, October 12, from 7pm until midnight.

Guests will also have the opportunity to bid for exclusive lots in the live and silent auctions and win superb prizes in the grand raffle.

As well as supporting terminal illness charity Marie Curie, The Glasgow Brain Game is a perfect occasion for entertaining clients, networking or simply having a fabulous evening.

Although the event is held in Glasgow, organisers are keen to emphasise that it is open to companies Scotland-wide to attend.

David Beal, Managing Director at The Beal Group Ltd. and Glasgow Brain Game committee member, said: “2017 promises to be another exceptional occasion filled with fun, competitive quizzing and corporate networking, perfect for entertaining clients and networking.”

Marie Curie is the leading charity for people living with a terminal illness and their families. Last year the charity provided care and support to over 8,000 people through its two Scottish hospices, through the West Lothian Palliative Care Service and in people’s homes across Scotland. There’s also a free confidential support line for anyone who has questions about terminal illness – 0800 090 2309.

There’s still time to register your interest in taking a table or sponsorship packages for this year’s Glasgow Brain Game. For more information, please contact Catherine Maclean via Catherine.maclean@mariecurie.org.uk or call 0141 557 7552.

Follow the Glasgow Brain Game on Twitter and there’s more information on the website www.mariecurie.org.uk/glasgowbraingame