Posted by: ninechallenges | 25 September, 2008

About the Charities

Hello! I thought it would be nice to share with you a little about the charities I am supporting and why.

The first challenge is the half-marathon, supporting the leukaemia and lymphoma society. This event is organised by Nike+, and they chose the charity for this event. However, I am a huge supporter of leukaemia charities. When I was 13, my best friends aunt (who was a close friend of the family), died of leukaemia aged just 40. She (and her family ) went through a terrible time in the year leading up to her death, and her family suffered horribly for quite some time afterwards. Anything we can do to eradicate this awful disease has to be good.

The next challenge is the firewalk for Zoe’s Place Baby Hospice in Middlesbrough. As you will see from the photo on the right, my son was born almost three months early, and spent five weeks in intensive care, so I know how valuable care and support is when your child is ill. Thankfully, Benjamin made a full recovery and is now doing well – I am all too aware that not all children are so lucky.  The next challenge, The Santa Run, is also in aid of Zoe’s Place and the Evening Chronicle Sunshine Fund, which helps disabled children here in the North East of England.

The next challenge is the Great Wall of China Trek, supporting the Samaritans. I have suffered from depression since the age of around 12, and have on occassion used the Samaritans service myself. It’s a lifeline to people who are having problems, in distress, or feeling suicidal. All the lines are manned by volunteers – people giving up their free time to help others in their time of need. It’s a very worthy cause, and I am proud to be able to support it.

The next challenge is the Edinburgh Marathon, in aid of Macmillan Cancer Support. Everybody knows about the incredible work that Macmillan do. I’ve seen several relatives go through cancer, thankfully they survived, but the work Macmillan do is vital and they need funds to continue. A very good cause indeed.

The next challenge is the skydive, in aid of British Heart Foundation. My grandfather and father both suffered several heart attacks, and my father died when he suffered a massive heart attack in the street – he died instantly. Heart disease is a terrible disease, a killer, and we must do all we can to prevent it – whether that be through research or education.I am proud to support the BHF in my fathers memory.

The Lake District Challenge is next – four mountain climbs in under 16 hours – and is in aid of the Make-a-Wish foundation. As the mother of a child who was seriously ill when born, I can only imagine how hard it is for parents whose children are terminally ill, or severely disabled. The Make-a-Wish foundation grant wishes to these children, which puts a smile on the face of the child during a difficult time, and gives the parents a lovely memory to cling to.

Next is the 23-mile bike ride for The Stroke Association. My grandfather suffered two massive strokes one after the other and unfortunately he didn’t survive the second one. Seeing the pain and trauma he went through during that time period was heartbreaking, and I am honoured to support the Stroke Association in his memory.

And last but not least, between now and December 31st 2009, I will walk 1,000 miles for Great Ormond Street Hospital Charity. As before, this is because I have seen my own son in hospital, and of course other children while I was there, and know first-hand just how valuable these services are.

So there we are, a little bit (well, little-ish!) about why I am doing all this.

As always, have a great day!

Tess xx

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