August 4, 2021

International Performance Artists do “Monologues for Lyme”

International Voice Coach Rachel Preece has today launched a unique campaign to raise awareness of Lyme disease after being bitten by a tick in her garden.

Rachel became ill in the summer of 2019 with aching limbs, lack of energy and cognitive issues. She felt so ill she thought she was dying. Despite having the bull’s eye rash her doctor dismissed Lyme disease, due to no prior knowledge of this distinctive mark.

 Struggling to receive treatment, Rachel called Caudwell LymeCo, a charity which provides information and advice for Lyme disease sufferers.

Caudwell LymeCo gave her the information and emotional support needed to procure the correct diagnosis and NHS treatment.

 To say thank you, she’s asked international artists – pop singers, actors, actresses, opera singers, musicians and visual artists, to perform and help raise money for Caudwell LymeCo. 

From October the 28thto November the 28tha wide variety of performances will be shared on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram, to encourage people to donate for Lyme disease research. This month-long cabaret is called – Monologues For Lyme.Important Lyme Disease information will be shared too.

Performers taking part include TV and film actor Kriss Dillon, singer/songwriter Zara Phillips, West End performer Tamsin Dowsett, actress Helen Percivaland TV and film actor, Mickey Wilson.

Rachel says: 

“I knew from the personal experience of friends how devastating Lyme disease can be. By chance I heard Bunny Guinness speak on BBC Radio 4 about her symptoms and recognised them as my own. With the help, advice and support of Caudwell LymeCo Charity, I was able to procure the necessary antibiotics from a sadly ignorant and unhelpful doctor.Undiagnosed Lyme destroys peoples’ lives every day, because not every doctor knows about it and the NHS test isn’t always accurate. Consequently, it masquerades as a myriad of illnesses that are never cured, as they spread around the body: affecting the brain, the spine, all the joints and the organs.

Caudwell LymeCo helped change the Government guidelines for the better, but the NHS treatments still aren’t good enough for full recoveries. Many, many people are living in chronic pain.

So, I’m doing this to raise money for research that finds better testing and treatments, so that everyone can be diagnosed, treated and cured on the NHS. I’m so grateful for the performers who have agreed to help”.

 Rosie Milsom, Fundraising & Communications Manager at Caudwell LymeCo says: 

“We are so grateful to Rachel for initiating this campaign, which is such a unique way of reaching wider audiences and getting them engaged with Lyme disease. Raising awareness is so important, as early diagnosis is key to a quick recovery. We are glad we that were able to help Rachel in getting the treatment she needed, but unfortunately, we’ve not been able to do that in every case. Thousands of new cases of Lyme are diagnosed in the UK each year, but there are many which go ignored or undetected. And for those who are diagnosed, the standard antibiotic protocol doesn’t always cure them. We need research to find more accurate tests and better treatment, and we are thankful to Rachel and the other performers for helping support this issue.”

Rachel is hoping to raise at least £1,500 via the campaign.   For more on her story and to donate, visit the JustGiving page here: https://www.justgiving.com/fundraising/monologuesforlyme

The Monologues for Lyme social media pages can be found here:

https://www.facebook.com/MonologuesForLyme/

https://www.instagram.com/monologuesforlyme/