Rosie Heaton

The support I have been given from meningitis now has helped get me through some difficult times


Young ambassador

I’m Rosie and I first experienced meningitis and septicaemia over 10 years ago when I became ill

I’m very lucky that I barely remember the experience itself, but the following years were a struggle as I got M.E/CFS and other chronic conditions such as kidney disease. I did not attend mainstream education due to the effects of meningitis, but I am now about to finish my A levels and head to university.

In 2012 when I met the founding young ambassador Alex Williams at a family day.  He knocked me off my feet and changed my life immeasurably.  We became the best of friends, with his sheer enthusiasm and passion for life changing my entire outlook on life… and I took on his motto of ‘’Believe and Achieve.’’ Sadly, I didn’t know Alex for long enough as he passed away due to the after effects of his meningitis, almost 10 years after he’d first had it. 

Alex, as he did with many, showed me what really mattered… and that was that if one life was saved from standing in a supermarket, or on a freezing street…It was worth it!  He inspired me to begin fundraising and the importance of raising awareness of meningitis, particularly among students. 

The support I have been given from meningitis now through art therapy, my local community support officer Chris, counselling and just generally befriending people has helped get me through some difficult times, and makes me want to give back… Its even shaped what I want to do as a career! I’ve raised money through hippy nights, coffee mornings, zip-wiring off the Imperial War Museum (make sure you’re wearing a belt… but that’s a story for another day!) and an Elvis Tribute Night.  Being a young ambassador has made me some great friends and taken me from the doors of Number 10 Downing Street delivering petitions to dressing up as a giant duck.

As a YA, I hope that I can help to give people a basic understanding of the symptoms of meningitis in the hopes that they will pass it on and it will snowball into a greater knowledge of the life changes meningitis can cause. 

  • Fiona Yelland

    Fiona Y

    Young ambassador

    Hi I’m Fiona. I had Meningitis when I was 15, on the 4th of October 2011; it was just a normal school day. However, that was about to change.

  • Kiera W


    Young ambassador

    Hello, my name is Kiera. Many years before I was born, my parents had their first child, Dominic. Dominic contracted meningitis B at a very young age, shortly after he won his battle with cancer.

  • Olivia Geary


    Young ambassador

    Hi I’m Livvy. My meningitis story begins with my nephew Jack, now aged 8. When Jack was two years old, he became extremely pale and weak after he had been unwell at a children’s party a few hours previous.

  • Young Ambassador day

    Matt W

    Young ambassador

    Hi I’m Matt. In August 2012 I became a Young Ambassador for Meningitis Now. The Young Ambassador’s role is to promote Meningitis Now to young people, and this is a huge challenge.