Marketing triumph – then given months to live

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Marketing agency founder Ben Wolfenden’s career hit a new high when he was voted entrepreneur of the year at Leeds Digital Festival.

But just days later he was hit with the bombshell news that he has just three months to live.

Now he faces a desperate fight to secure the financial support he needs to have life-saving treatment in Switzerland.

He has now has published a fundraising page detailing the medical events that left him fighting for  life and with no alternative than to travel to Geneva, for a second double lung transplant.

Ben, pictured with wife Daisy, above, has battled with Cystic Fibrosis all his life and, after catching the flu in 2019, had an emergency double lung transplant when he was just moments from death.

Whilst the operation was a success, things took a turn for the worse five weeks later, causing his body to initially reject his new lungs.

Ben Wolfenden
Ben: race against time

Now, instead of enjoying life back with his wife and two young children, he has been told he won’t make it to Christmas.

Ben says he has no chance of a second transplant and his family have sought the opinion of a pulmonary transplant expert in Switzerland who, after reviewing his files, has agreed to act.

For his final chance at life, Ben must now travel to and live in Geneva, he is seeking donations to support his living costs before and post-transplant. Just last week, before his battle was made public, Ben was voted Entrepreneur of the Year at Leeds Digital Festival Awards 2020.

I’m  dying in front of my children whilst my wife faces the unthinkable reality of becoming a widow in her 30s

Within just an hour of publishing his GoFundMe fundraising page, Ben had received over £10,000 in donations, and within 24 hours, had exceeded his initial £100,000 target, but he must meet £175,000 to cover the calculated living and health insurance costs.

He said: “I’m currently bed-bound, dying in front of my children whilst my wife faces the unthinkable reality of becoming a widow in her 30s.

“My transplant last year should have given me years more; chance to watch my children grow up, play football with my son and walk my daughter down the aisle. Now my only hope is travelling to have the operation in Geneva.

“To keep costs down, Daisy and our children will have to stay in the UK, but the expense is still out of our reach. I’m now relying on the kindness of friends and strangers to save my life, and give me years more with my family.

“Winning the award last week, as well as the Digital Agency title for Wolfenden, was an unforgettable moment – to know that the wider digital community put me forward was very humbling. I’m now appealing back to that community to support me, the agency and my family in this critical final battle.”

Donations can be made to Ben’s fundraising campaign by following this link

SME Autumn 2020