Couple nominated for Ice Bucket Challenge craze

Paula and Robert Maguire
Paula and Robert Maguire
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A South Yorkshire midwife has been nominated for a prestigious national award.

Paula Maguire, who has worked at Barnsley Hospital for the past two years, received the nomination for a British Citizen Award for her continued dedication to fundraising.

Paula and her husband Robert, who was nominated alongside her for the award, were responsible for bringing the Ice Bucket Challenge to the UK in 2014, to raise money for the Motor Neurone Disease Association.

The challenge - which involved people having a bucket of ice water dumped on their heads to promote awareness of the disease amyotrophic lateral sclerosis and encourage donations to research - went viral on social media and Paula’s Just Giving page alone has raised an incredible four million pounds for the charity.

The nomination, by their 19-year-old daughter, came as a complete surprise to the couple when it was confirmed last month.

The pair have been involved in fundraising for a number of years, but decided to turn their attention to motor neurone disease after Paula’s uncle died of the disease in 2009.

Paula, aged 41, of Wakefield, said: “We knew we wanted to raise awareness as well as money for the cause and were thrilled with the way people embraced the Ice Bucket Challenge and with the money raised.

“I am extremely honoured and humbled to have been nominated for a British Citizen Award. Although we don’t do these things to be awarded, it is lovely to have been recognised for our fundraising.

“I am inspired by the people living with MND and I hope that the ice bucket challenge has highlighted the disease and the impact it has on people globally.

“We want to continue fundraising for the charity in the future and have already planned lots of marathons for 2016.”

The British Citizen Awards recognises determined and committed individuals who have done something extraordinary in the community or workplace, effectively impacting the lives of those around them.

The awards ceremony will take place on Thursday January 28 in the House of Lords at the Palace of Westminster.

Visit www.justgiving.com/icebucket4mnd to donate.