Hello, and thanks for taking the time to look at my page. I will be running the London Marathon in 2016 in support of the Teenage Cancer Trust.
It has always been one of my life's goals to complete the gruelling full distance of 26.2 miles, and when the TCT offered me the chance to do so, I leapt at the opportunity. Only once my place in the race was confirmed a following a summer of inactivity did it strike me, what a gargantuan task is ahead of me!
As many of you know I have never been the most naturally talented athlete! But despite this I have caught the distance running bug, I have completed the Colchester Half Marathon in 2011 in support of a local charity, and again in 2015, with only one training run, as my doctor advised me not to do any sports again following torn ankle ligaments!
I may not get the chance to do this ever again before the already creaky knees and ankles give in, so I have been working really hard on my training runs. Thankfully the training has been going well so far and I am injury-free!
I think you would agree that the TCT is one of the UK's most beloved charities, the national response to the fundraising efforts of the late Stephen Sutton who raised just shy of £5M back in 2014 shows this.
But the TCT has been at the forefront of people's minds locally too, as my friends at Colchester United will agree. The club has been a longstanding supporter of the Trust, dating back to 2006, when the famous promotion-winning team recorded charity single "Stand Up 4 Col U" - this created a feelgood factor in the community that has lead to a tradition of the supporters and the Club supporting the TCT on many occasions since. This is a tradition I am only too happy to continue!
The following is a brief outline of how the TCT helps young people with Cancer, taken from their website:
"7 young people are diagnosed with cancer every day in the UK. We’re the only charity dedicated to providing specialist care and support when they need it most.
We've built world-class specialist facilities in 28 hospitals across the UK, providing a home away from home for young people while they receive treatment.
We also fund specialist nurses and youth support co-ordinators to support the young people in these units. They've been specially trained to understand what it's like to have cancer when you're young, giving support and helping young people to feeling less isolated.
Our Education Team travel the country, talking to young people about the importance of being able to spot the signs of cancer, while breaking down stigmas that normally stop people from talking about it. Sign up your secondary school, college or univiersity for a free session.
Our family support network gives parents, siblings and wider family and friends the chance to meet others who understand their situation at every stage of the cancer journey.
We fund 2 specialist units in the North West, but we wanted to find a way to reach those young people that were unable to benefit from the facilities these units provide. Our nursing and support pilot saw a team of 7 teenage and young adult cancer specialists working within NHS teams across Greater Manchester, Cheshire, Lancashire and South Cumbria to help us reach every young person with cancer across the region.
Losing your hair following treatment for cancer can be a big shock, especially as a young person. With Hair 4 U we work with award winner hairdresser Charlie Miller and some of the UK's top salons to ensure every young person with cancer has the option to choose a real hair wig for free."
Thanks in advance for your support, it is truly a privilege to be able to support the Teenage Cancer Trust in this way and I come April 24th, I will not let them down!
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