132 %
raised of £1,300 target
by 77 supporters
Team Shiney Unicorns avatar
Team Shiney Unicorns

We're walking Shine Night marathon in the fight against cancer

We are walking 26.2 miles for Cancer Research UK because we want to kick cancer where it hurts!

132 %
raised of £1,300 target
by 77 supporters
  • Team members: Clare Charlton, Zoe Evans, Emma Hawkins and Clair Umbo
  • Event: Shine in the fight against prostate cancer, 27 Sep 2014

Cancer Research UK

We pioneer life-saving cancer research to help beat cancer sooner

Charity Registration No. in England and Wales 1089464, Scotland SC041666



We are Team Shiney Unicorn, a group of four wonderful ladies from the south of England who have decided to walk a marathon.  We've not done this before so please please give us your support.  We are a little insane and the "fit" word is not really a word we identify with.  Yet.  We have time to get fitter.

Zoe’s story 

Last night, I went for a 10 mile walk, after the kids were in bed, as a mini-practice for Shine.  As I plodded along, enjoying Muse in my ears, I really had a good think – Why am I doing this? 

At first, the reason was more about the exercise than the charitable cause.  In June I ran 5k to raise funds for a Norwich charity “Keeping Abreast”, which again was more as a goal to help me get fit.  So when I had finished it, I asked “what next?” and Clare kindly invited me to join her, Clair and Emma do the Shine marathon.  Which gave me a fine goal to work towards, and I was happy, pushing myself to get healthier. 

But as I walked I realised there was more to it than this.  I work in the breast cancer services, mostly screening the general public, but often seeing women for follow up after they have had their surgery and other treatments.  Breast cancer care has come on in leaps and bounds in recent years, but the surgery doesn’t always leave a flattering impression, shall we say, and I meet women who have suffered reoccurrence far too often!  And I won’t even mention chemotherapy!  More needs to be done.  That is where Cancer Research UK come in, and they do great work. 

The most important thing is that I to walk Shine for uncle Ronnie and cousin Michelle, both lost to us by cancer. 

Clare, Clair and Emma are dedicating a mile of the walk to a nominated loved one who has suffered due to cancer, and asking our sponsors who they would like us to march for.  But personally, I have decided to walk this for my family who have been left behind.  For aunt Marion and her clan.

Clair's story

So, I am walking a marathon....

Back on the 10th of May this year I signed up to complete the 2014 Shine walking marathon in aid of Cancer Research. For many people 26.2 miles may not sound that far but for me, an unfit, overweight, 32 year  old who spends her day at a desk and her leisure knitting or playing board games, it seems a mammoth undertaking.

To be fair, I had given it a lot of thought. Back in 2010 my friend Clare got me to sign up for the 5K Race For Life (also in aid of Cancer Research). I had no idea how far 5K was but thought, 'why not?' I really only signed up to keep her company. I am lucky, cancer has never been part of my life and, although it had affected those I knew, they had either, recovered (yay) or been on the periphery of my friendship group, friends of friends, an old school teacher, people my parents knew. It sounds selfish to say but I'd never really paid cancer much attention. As it turns out 5K is not far at all (for me...my friend Hayley recently did 5K and for her I suspect it was even more of a challenge than my Shine walk. I am so proud of her) but one of the things we chatted about was Shine. My work colleague was walking it and we thought it would be great to sign up. I don't think either of us were serious, it was just too big, too far, too challenging.

Skip to late 2012 and my cousin Ian,  the father of two young girls, beloved husband and one if the most lovely, funny and genuine man I have ever known, died of cancer. Yet again I gave the Shine marathon thought, this time far more seriously. Yet again I didn't sign up, I procrastinated and missed the sign up, I found excuses, in truth, I just didn't believe I could do it.

Now it's 2014 and I have signed up. It took some persuading, bullying and all my negotiation skills to convince myself but I did it. Clare signed up and I realised I really couldn't find any more excuses; I wanted to do something to mark how important Ian is to me; and what better than to also raise money to fund research in to cancer cures.

So that's me. Now it's over to you. Please see the links below. If you can, give us a follow onTwitter, share our JustGiving link and, if possible, please, please sponsor us. Every penny can make a difference.

Thank you.

Clare's story:  

Hi, Thanks for taking the time to read our page.  I'm personally raising money to kick prostate cancer where it hurts.  I've lost my wonderful Dad and my awesome Granddad to this cancer, both spread and we lost them very early in life.  Dad died when I was in my mid-20's, too quick and we had little warning. I've since done a number of things to raise money for the charities looking to improve detection and treat prostate cancer, this being by far the most challenging.  Our family has been particularly hit by this one with my uncle also getting prostate cancer.  Enough is enough.  My friends father also has had prostate cancer and is still going strong thankfully.  I'd rather he didn't have to go through that at all.  

My Dad had a bad back, he had high blood pressure.  That was all.  Thanks to a routine blood test because of his blood pressure tablets, his advanced cancer was discovered, it had spread to a number of areas including his spine and his renal organs.  He had no symptoms, none.  No one could have even guessed he had cancer at that time.  He had not lost weight, he was still active and he felt well.  Within minutes in the GPs our lives got turned upside down.  This was just before Christmas.  We were told he would have maybe six to eighteen months to live.  We were lucky.  He had the latter.  My wedding was brought forward, a girl dreams of having her Dad at her wedding, so we did everything we could to ensure he would be there.  As it goes, in June 2005 I got married and my friend gave me away.  Dad was too sick to attend and was admitted to hospital that same day, I'd spent the night before my wedding with a paramedic and Mum putting him back into bed after he fell out.  It was August that same summer that we lost him.  I'm not forgiving prostate cancer for that... no chance.  Just two months after my wedding, the same church, we said goodbye.  No one else should get married without their family present.  I want early detection, screening if necessary.  Something has to be done.  With early detection, my uncle is still alive, Gramps had years more with us, and my friend still has her Granddad. 

This is not a bleeding heart story, don't feel sorry for me, get angry at cancer with me, I'm not asking you to walk the marathon with us (although you are more than welcome), I'm asking that you support us, follow us on Twitter and Facebook, sponsor us, come and support us on the night, and generally, help us kick cancer.

Please please give what you can to this cause and to us.  We know its a tough time, money is tight therefore we don't ask much, every little helps and in this case we want to raise as much as possible.  Just remember.... its dark over night, in late September it is cold over night, while you are sleeping on the 27th September 2014, we, alongside thousands of others, will be walking 26.2 miles to kick cancer.  Even a quid makes a difference when added to other peoples quids. 

To put this into context, none of us can be considered top of our game, we all need to do a lot of training before we can walk this one, ok so it's not running the London marathon, but the effects on our unfit bodies will be the same, maybe more.  You are paying to see us put our bodies to the very maximum of our endurance, dress up as silly as possible, wear more glow sticks than is right for a human being and walk a flipping long way.  If nothing else, we are sure you want to see us to that! We will finish cold, tired, hungry, possibly wet.  That's worth it right?

Every penny helps prevent, detect and cure cancer.  Let's do it people!  Let's help do something this generation can do well... science! 

The technical bit:  Gift Aid

If you are a UK taxpayer, please remember to tick the Gift Aid box when donating as this will increase your donation by at least 25% at no cost to you.

Sleep can wait. Beating cancer can’t.


Heaps of thanks all and we really do appreciate it.  if you leave us email addresses we will also try and send pics during the event, or you can follow any of us on facebook.  Twitter is @shiney_unicorns ... we will be posting pics, stuff, and comments along the way and throughout training.  In fact.  We already are!  Why are you not subscribed?

Team Shiney Unicorns x


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