Our inspiration

The Believe and Achieve Trust was set up to continue the work of the most inspirational young man, Alex Williams. Let us tell you more…

When Alex was seven he contracted meningitis and ended up on life support, fighting for his life. He survived but his life changed forever. He ended up in a wheelchair with lots of after effects, but it didn’t stop Alex from doing what he set his mind to.

Alex spent three nights a week volunteering for a disabled dance group and was a sports ambassador for Tameside. He was also the Meningitis Trust’s first ever Young Ambassador and was passionate about making everyone aware of the symptoms of meningitis, spending every weekend giving out awareness cards.

Alex won lots of awards and regularly appeared in the media. He proudly carried the Olympic torch, the only person nominated more than once… in fact he was nominated 24 times! Alex then spent a whole month going to schools in Tameside talking to the children about his motto, “believe and achieve”. He really believed that if you put your mind to it, you could achieve anything! The children in the school loved it.

In August 2012, Alex had a stroke as a direct result of the after-effects of meningitis and passed away. Our devastation made us realise the only way forward was to carry on his work, raising awareness of meningitis and support other young people like Alex whose lives have been affected by this disease or who were coping with challenges in their lives.

The Believe and Achieve Trust was born in 2014 and, with Alex as our inspiration and your help, we continue to make a difference to people’s lives.

Our work

The Believe and Achieve Trust strives to improve the physical and mental health of children and young people in Manchester who are facing challenges because of meningitis, disability or their personal situation.

The charity provides direct support through support grants to children and young people to allow them to have access to specialist aids and equipment, or take part in an activity of their choice – all with the aim of improving their quality of life. Our name reflects our goal of encouraging children and young people to believe that they can do something, and supporting them to achieve it!

In addition to enabling children and young people to “believe and achieve”, we also raise awareness of meningitis – a disease which kills and maims in hours. Knowledge of the signs and symptoms and taking fast action if meningitis is suspected literally can mean the difference between life and death. In partnership with Meningitis Now, we distribute life-saving signs and symptoms cards and give talks at local schools and organisations.

Alex’s inspiration continues to drive us forward, but we can only achieve our goals with your help. We have to raise all the funds we need and whether you can help with time or money, you will be making a difference.

Our aim

The Believe and Achieve Trust aims to increase the physical and mental health of those affected by meningitis and support sufferers wishing to succeed in sport. Along our journey we will also continue to raise the awareness of meningitis and it symptoms.

Our team

We are committed to making the biggest difference we can and helping as many children, young people and their families “believe and achieve”.


  • Wayne Williams
  • Ian Ainscough
  • Philip Clayton
  • Matthew Newbury
  • Emma Toone
  • Mark Storie

Fundraising Committee

  • Laura Cummings (Chair)
  • Matthew Ainscough
  • Julie Cummings
  • Sarah Cummings
  • Karen Hillier
  • Jade Mullan
  • Joanne Moore
  • Joanne Rowbottom
  • Gillian Taylor
  • Gareth Worrall

How we are funded

We need your help to continue our work and enabling children and young people to “believe and achieve”. We do not get any government funding and are entirely dependent on voluntary donations to fund our work.

Our supporters raise money in many different ways. And our supporters are individuals, schools, companies and community groups – all of whom make a difference to people’s lives.

  • Collecting at our local stores whilst giving out meningitis symptom cards.
  • Support from runners who take part in runs such as the Manchester 10k
  • Holding a range of fundraisers throughout the year such as fitness events, family days, social evenings
  • People also donate funds or time.

    Thank you to everyone that has made it possible for children and young people to “believe and achieve”.


    I had a meningitis scare with my son Alfie. A few days ago he was showing some signs of meningitis, but I wouldn't have known any of these signs if it wasn't for the hard work Alex did in making people aware. I'd like to say a massive thank you to you on behalf of Alex and his hard work you are carrying on.