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Debbie Flint

My Charity

My Charity (57)

A Word About my Charity – Medical Detection Dogs.

watch this video -

I first found out about Medical Detection Dogs at the Moonwalk charity event in May 2015. I was invited to be an ambassador after raising £5,500 in the summer, and have been working alongside them ever since. Their work involves some incredible life-saving relationships between canine and owner – some of whom have life-threatening conditions like brittle type 1 diabetes, Addison’s disease, POTS, and more. The canine partners alert the owners eg when blood sugar goes too low or too high and the transformation in their lives is incredible.

Other clever cancer detection dogs help with the research being carried out into early prostate cancer detection, which down the line should mean integrating the efficient accuracy of a dog’s nose into regular NHS screening, and the development of an electronic nose to cut waiting times and avoid false positives. Currently a PSA test can be up to 75% false positives and worse, up to a third false negatives. Biopsies are intrusive and stressful and costly. By 2018 MDD hope their studies will be published and the vital next steps can begin.

My work involves continual fund raising. My latest paperback version of my non-fiction work, Till the Fat Lady Slims 3.0 - tips and tales to inspire, is in aid of MDD. Last year's fundraising resulted in me donating enough to be able to name a little MDD trainee puppy – a golden Labrador called Derek! (After my late dad, I thought it was funny! Poor dog.) and another called Lesley after my mum! All the info, pics and videos, are in the archives below.

Do check out more information on the charity on their own website –  

And do donate on our ongong MDD page which will list the events you can attend to see some of these magical animals at work, plus support our endevours to raise funds for them.



Well what a fabulous weekend we had when we opened the doors at Retreats for You in Sheepwash for two afternoons of vintage teas, in aid of MDD. Three of the partnerships came to stay for the weekend, including trainer Debra church, Gemma and Polo and Claire and Julian, Gemma's parents, plus lovely Carolyn and Simba. All the dogs played well with my two!

video here 

And here's what it's all about - when Simba alerts Carolyn that her blood sugars are at a dangerous level. watch what happened here.

Plus a lady called Eileen and her llittle dog Eddie came by from their home locally in Exmouth, and to be featured on the BBC Spotlight South west report which went out that evening on BBC1, and brought several people anew, on the Sunday. On Sunday we also had Charlie Bears' William and Charlie Morris attend, to present a cheque for £4000 and posed for the Okehampton times photographer. It was raised by sales of the little collectable mohair bear Bones who is now available here on QVC, well what's left of the stock as it's nearly all gone!

Many pics and videos are on the latest QVC blog I did, go here to read it and see them all!

Well done everyone involved. More at Easter, I hope.

more about the amazing charity Medical Detection Dogs here, including how you can donate or name a puppy after a loved one or your organisation, school or town.

best wishes



Here it is - the latest update I've been sent about my little sponsor dog whom I named after my late dad Derek when I donated £2000 to the charity. Go here to find out more if you'd like to donate and name one too!

Plus - malaria detection dogs - in case you missed it previously, there is now a plan for a programme to develop dogs who can detect if someone has malaria - very important due to the Zika virus.  more here.




Charlie Bears will be coming down to my Vintage Pop Up Tea Rooms in Devon Feb 18,19thHow exciting! We are doing a bit of a fundraiser for Medical Detection Dogs too that weekend and a couple of the actual dogs themselves will be coming along – am so proud to be involved and it makes me smile knowing our help is contributing to irreplaceable canine companionship which changes lives. More here. Book it in your diary if you live nearby – and come try our homemade cakes and exquisite teas in bone china cups in a vintage setting – can’t wait! Sheepwash is EX215NE if you want to check out how far away you are from Retreats For You.

Charlie Bears will be coming down to my Vintage Pop Up Tea Rooms in Devon Feb 17,18,19th! How exciting! We are doing a bit of a fundraiser for MDD too that weekend and a couple of the actual dogs themselves will be coming along – am so proud to be involved and it makes me smile knowing our help is contributing to irreplaceable canine companionship which changes lives. More here. Book it in your diary if you live nearby – and come try our homemade cakes and exquisite teas in bone china cups in a vintage setting – can’t wait! Sheepwash is EX215NE if you want to check out how far away you are from Retreats For You.

1 February 2017

Derek the dog - 'Pup'-date

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another pic of my little boy ‘Derek’ the trainee Medical Detection Dogs partner dog I paid sponsor money to name (after my late dad Derek,) who will go to become a diabetes detection dog soon – am so proud of him. There will be a chance to go meet them all at Crufts this year, hall 3, stand 94, from March 9th to Sunday 12th inclusive. If you can go, do ask about their amazing work in cancer detection research too – it’s incredible.

Am going to also attend the Dogs Day Out near milton keynes in April - on 2nd. More soon, or check out their website here.


come join us on Saturday to help Linda Magistris raise funds to kick off the new charity Good Grief Trust. I will be there and so will lots of bargains!

The event will take place from 11am to 3pm on Saturday February 4 at St. Anselm's Church, Old Hall, Balham High Rd.

"Good quality" donations are wanted. For more information or to make a donation please visit gofundme site.


Lovely Lesley my Medical Detection Dogs sponsor dog – here's her latest update. Since I sponsored her puppy-naming, calling her after my mum (who was delighted - see archive for the pics!) she's coming on leaps and bounds!

Plus look who is supporting MDD! Thanks to Michele Hope for her fabulous visit – do check out her Facebook page for more info about how she intends to help raise funds for MDD too.

And we had a super night at Retreats for You in aid of MDD - raising £80 with a little raffle. Waiting for Christina to let me know what supplies they need and will send it!



The Good Grief Trust is forging ahead with its launch plans – had the photo and video shoot last week with lovely Linda Magistris, for the launch site, including meeting up with Shirley from Pepsi and Shirley, aka Mrs Kemp. She was very nice too. More about Linda’s latest news here.

Go see Leeds Castle and meet MDD dogs how Christmassy does my little sponsor dog, Derek, look here? Bless him! I guess he’s about 18 months old now? If you go along to the extravaganza for yuletide at Leeds Castle you can meet some Medical Detection Dogs – they are truly amazing, do go if you can. And watch the impressive video of the festive event here.

It takes bravery to tell all about such a personal subject but that's exactly what one of our patrons, Ian Duncan Smith's lovely wife Betsy, did in the national newspapers this week. She also explains how she was so impressed with the work of MDD research and how it may one day help others int he same position with breast cancer, to be diagnosed earlier.

REad all of Andrew Pierce's article about Betsy Duncan Smith and Medical Detection Dogs in the Daily Mail Tue 15th here.



Some are now sold out! Eeeek! It's getting close to the time when I usually write mine, so maybe get some this year of these beautiful designs and help MDD at the same time! I've ordered some of this one - love it!

click here to get yours on MDD site.


Best wishes


How amazing and how thrilled was I to be asked to help spread the word about this new support system for the bereaved.

The Good Grief Trust has some superb aims, and my pal Linda Magistris, who you may remember from the vintage tea rooms/supper/fete we did in the summer, says the following -

"The Good Grief Trust Fundraising update: We are delighted to say that at 6pm today our National Fundraising Campaign will be going LIVE. If you are able to make a donation, no matter how small and join us in this ambitious project to work towards our goals, we would be very grateful.

This initiative to change the face of bereavement in the UK is on a National scale and it will therefore need significant funding, so we are able to set up this new Charity, ensure it reaches everyone across the whole of the country and we are able to achieve our objectives; These are our main aims;

1) To develop The Good Grief Guide .com - a new fully comprehensive Support Website for the UK.

2) To develop a strategy (i.e. new Bereavement 'Pack') to find every person in the UK, via hospitals, hospices, Police, Funeral Directors, Care Homes & Clergy, who is bereaved and signpost them to targeted help and support as quickly as possible.

3) To work with Health professionals to bring together best practice across the country, sharing successful, innovative projects so that both the health service and the public can benefit from a fresh new approach to bereavement services.

4) To bring all bereavement charities, services and organisations under the one umbrella, for simple, easy access, providing practical help, advice and support in the early days, through to offering hope for the future with a wealth of inspiring ideas, services and ongoing support.

We intend for our virtual hand of friendship to reach those who need it most, whether the loss was a friend, sibling, partner, grandparent or child and no matter when the loss happened, grief is something we take with us for always.
Thank you so much. Linda x

Linda sadly lost her soulmate Graham and found herself bereft of support. She says it made her realise how needed an umbrella group was. Read her story on the Go fund Me page below - where you'll also see her launch video on BBC Breakfast from September 2016.


 The Good Grief Trust was recently launched on BBC Breakfast on Graham's 2nd anniversary - we aim to be the UK's 1st National Charity to bring all bereavement services under the one umbrella.

Over the coming months I will feature updates here on my charity page about the Good Grief Trust too.

Links below to start reading what they say and how you can join in - 


twitter - @goodgrieftrust

Go Fund Me page - and Linda's video from TV appeal Sept 2016 -

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