Overcoming Adversity

Jacques Isabelle

Jacques Isabelle won the Overcoming Adversity award.

The former Guernsey footballer was diagnosed with leukaemia back in January 2022, aged just 35.

But this has not stopped him from continuing to achieve. 

Mary Isabelle, Mr Isabelle’s mother, picked up the award on behalf of her son, who lives in Dubai.

‘He thought that the fact he lives abroad might count against him, he’s in bed now so he will wake up to some good news,’ she said.

Mr Isabelle is now well into his recovery, and recently helped raise £40,000 for charity by cycling from Land’s End to John O’Groats. 

Mrs Isabelle hoped that her son’s cycling achievement and subsequent award win would help shine a light on leukaemia.

‘During the ride he was having to take his medication, and while the others riding with him were fuelling up on food he was having to fast.’

‘They were riding an average of 114 miles a day for 10 days.’

She said that his diagnosis had taught him a lot about himself and what he was capable of.

‘I think he has learnt that if you put your mind to it you can achieve anything no matter what your circumstances.

‘We’re all so proud of him and completely over the moon.’

Tony Curr, Mr Isabelle’s nominator, said he was amazed at his bright energy and positive attitude. 

‘He still needs ongoing treatment to monitor the blood disease but he’s very much in the healthy zone despite that.’

‘I just think he approached it super positively and did all he could in the best way.’

Megan Cluett and Jeremy Mahoney were the other finalists.