Cancer care for Albert Thompson

£45,907 of £54,000 goal

Raised by 2,845 people in 10 months
24th April, 11pm - SUCCESS: Albert has now been granted free NHS treatment!!! Thank you to all who donated and I am very pleased we don't have to pay for something which he was always entitled to for free anyway. I am in discussion with all relevant parties about what the best use of funds is, and I will confirm this with everyone as soon as possible. It will take some coordination, and liaising with lawyers to work out how Albert is able to access the fund, so please be patient. I will keep the fundraiser open for now as some people are still keen to donate even though they know it won't go towards treatment specifically.

From the bottom of my heart, THANK YOU!


Albert Thompson*, 63 years old, has lived in London for 44 years. He has prostate cancer. After major surgery, he arrived for his first radiotherapy session to be taken aside and told that unless he can prove he is legally entitled to live in the UK he will have to pay the full £54,000 for his treatment upfront.

For 3 decades, Albert has paid taxes to the British Government. He arrived from Jamaica as a teenager. He has no money and he needs our help.

Cancer doesn't wait. 

**Please like, RT and share the campaign with your friends!** #ActionforAlbert  #Windrush

There are lots of tweets to RT on my profile: 

I am asking every visitor to this fundraiser to contribute towards the £54,000 for Albert's treatment, and I would like us to raise this by Friday 13th April. 

We shouldn't have to, but the Government has not responded despite weeks of pressure and this is now very urgent.

Three weeks ago I launched a petition to the Home Office for Albert which has so far raised over 280,000 signatures. Albert's case and this petition has had repeated media coverage. The issue was also bought up at PMQs, where Theresa May said she wasn't aware of it but that she would personally intervene; she later said that she wouldn't intervene and that this is a decision for Royal Marsden. However, Royal Marsden's hands are tied, because their decision is actually related to the Home Office needing to recognise Albert as a UK citizen.

If you haven't already, sign the petition here:

We've given the government time to respond, and it has failed to adequately do so, despite the victim of their indecision suffering from a life-threatening and progressive disease. We shouldn't have to do this, but we must.

Having been a primary carer for loved ones who have had cancer, I know that it is expensive, frightening and depressing. People who do not have a lot of savings or support from elsewhere struggle massively financially, and Albert has been unable to work for some years now due to cancer so has nothing. Even with appropriate support, cancer is a lonely and terrifying journey. I can't imagine the despair that this man must be feeling right now.

This is part of a much wider issue, of people who originally came from Commonwealth countries now not being recognised as legal citizens - despite living in our country for many, many years and contributing in the same way we do. Let's stand up for their rights - and stand up to the increasingly harsh landscape that the Home Office is creating for innocent people that are relying on their country's support at the hardest times in their lives.

The minimum target for this fundraiser is £54k to pay for Albert's treatment, but if we raise more than this I will donate the extra money to Praxis, the charity that have been supporting Albert, who deal with hundreds of cases like this.

If Albert is granted treatment for free, then I will talk to Albert's case worker about how best to use the money. It may be that we can help him with living expenses to help him through the next while, and that the rest goes to Praxis who support many others like Albert. I will work closely with Praxis to agree this.

To those that donated to Praxis previously, here is a statement from them about how it has been used: (scroll down a little) and you will recieve an email update with more details shortly. 

Read my article on the Huffington Post for more detail: 

*This name has been chosen to protect this man's identity
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Dear all,

A quick update on how the funds raised through this fundraising campaign for Albert Thompson's cancer treatment will be used.

As mentioned in my previous update, the Government finally granted Sylvester Marshall the Indefinite Leave to Remain (and free NHS treatment) he was always entitled to after the huge amounts of pressure and media attention his case bought to the Home Office's hostile policies. As you'll know, a lot has happened since then in the political sphere and the issue continues to develop.

After liaising with Sylvester Marshall (Albert's real name) via his son Selwyn, we have agreed that £10,000 will go towards Praxis - the charity that supports Sylvester and many other migrants in similar, horrendous predicaments - and that the rest will go to Albert's son to be used as and where appropriate to support Albert in getting his life back together. As you know, he was made homeless, and will need ongoing support in many forms to support his health whilst he has treatment and beyond. I also think he probably needs a holiday! How the family wish to use the funds is at their own discretion but it is clear from our conversations that it will be used in accordance with how I feel people who donated will have wanted (also, I did ask for peoples' thoughts and the amounts given reflect the general consensus).

Thank you all again for supporting Sylvester. Our work sent a really strong message to the Home Office that the British public will not tolerate its hostile policies, and even though there is a lot still to be done on that agenda it was amazing to see how the public backing for Albert helped to bring the Windrush issue under the spotlight so that the Government was forced to act. A large number of people who were previously without hope after going through all manner of awful ordeals are seeing light at the end of the tunnel.

Please continue to support this issue in every way you can. It's clear that the Home Office has a lot of work to do to make its policies humane and fair, and the media will only report on the stories that people support. There are always so many issues vying for our attention, and it's natural to get media fatigue - but I hope you'll hold Sylvester's story close for a bit and keep using your voices to show that Britain does, indeed, have a heart.

Very best wishes

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Five weeks, 419,000 signatures, £46,000 and countless tweets and political machinations later, Albert has FINALLY been granted the free NHS treatment for his prostate cancer that we’ve all been tirelessly campaigning for.

Albert will start his radiotherapy in a week's time. He said he was 'very excited' about this, and that he was surprised at the sudden rush, citing all of the pressure on the government as the reason why - 'it has really shaken them up', he said.

From the bottom of my heart, thank you to everyone who has signed the petition for Albert, donated and spoken out about this terrible injustice which could easily have gotten buried underneath the many stories appearing about the Windrush Generation. For me, Albert’s case was particularly urgent because of the need for cancer treatment, but I have heard from organisations associated with this issue (plus a source at the Home Office) that our collective, united voice around his case has helped raise the profile of the issue more generally - which was always the hope.

I feel that Albert's case could set a precedent for others who are still suffering injustice at the hands of the Conservative Government. Read my letter in the Guardian today about this:

This week I'll print out (and edit!) the thousands of amazing comments people have written for Albert Thompson and hand deliver it to @Praxis_Projects to give to him before he starts treatment. Please comment below with messages of love and support for Albert and I will add these to the pot.

I am in discussion with all relevant parties now about the best way to use the money that has been raised for Albert's treatment. I will confirm this as soon as possible. It will take some coordination, and liaising with lawyers to work out how Albert is able to access the fund, so please be patient.

As stated before, the money is likely to go towards supporting Albert (I think he might need a holiday!) and also towards the charity Praxis, who have done a stellar job in supporting Albert and others, and raising this issue.

This isn’t the end of the Windrush story, nor Albert’s - who is still fighting a legal case about his immigration status - and I will continue to work to try to make sure that he gets the best outcome possible in every sense of the word. As soon as I have confirmation, I will share news of how the funds will be used plus keep you updated on further developments with his treatment as and where appropriate, according to his wishes.

I will also look to see how the wider campaign and its supporters might contribute meaningfully to the wider Windrush story happening right now - watch this space.

Thank you all again. I don't know about you, but I'll sleep much more soundly tonight. It’s been a crazy few weeks, and I know Albert has been delighted with the public support for his case. We should all give ourselves a big pat on the back.

Jacqueline (@quiline)

PS. For now, I wanted to share Patrick Vernon's fundraiser, supported by the Joint Council for the Welfare of Immigrants, Runnymede Trust and the Black Cultural Archives, for a special hotline for Windrush British citizens who need impartial, independent advice with their interest at heart - not the government's
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URGENT ACTION: Ask govt to tell Albert he can finally get treatment!

18 APR 2018 — BIG NEWS! A few minutes ago, Theresa May said that Albert will no longer be denied the cancer treatment he desperately needs from the NHS.

Whilst this is great, Albert and Praxis have not been told! That’s why I urgently need all of you to tweet to the Prime Minister and Amber Rudd to get them to contact Albert and confirm this. Until that happens, we still need to campaign and raise the money.

I’ve created this link to make it as easy as possible to tweet.

It reads " .@theresa_may @AmberRuddHR 364,143 of us are calling on you to contact Albert Thompson urgently to confirm that he can finally get the cancer treatment he needs! #windrushgeneration #actionforalbert "

If we can do this, we can not only help Albert but set a precedent for anyone else who finds themselves in this position.

As always, thank you for your support! I will of course keep you updated on what happens next.

I am keeping this fundraiser open until Albert has had confirmation he is getting treatment. If he is given it for free, then I will be working closely with the charity supporting him to agree how to use this money. I have suggested some goes to Albert for living expenses and a holiday, and then the rest to Praxis. Curious to hear your thoughts on that!
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This morning the Daily Mail launches a campaign for Albert and others in his situation in a thoughtful and sympathetic piece:

They’ve included a link to our fundraiser for Albert’s treatment, which is fantastic. It has raised £32,000 so far but we still need £23,000 so please, please do share this page with your friends and encourage them to donate. It’s now been months since Albert was refused treatment and cancer does not wait.

Thank you again, to all of the extremely kind people who have contributed to this fundraiser so far. We’ve raised a lot in a short period of time and we should be very proud of that. It’s great reading all of your comments and remembering there are so many kind people in the world. Albert massively appreciates our efforts, also.

Have a great weekend,
Jacqueline (@quiline)
Daily Mail campaign for Albert
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