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Fundraising Drive is a Family Affair

A Whitley Bay family have been on a fundraising drive to raise funds for MS Research and Relief Fund’s Hydrotherapy Pool Appeal.

Cath Armstrong, a regular service user at Benmar House, has always been proactive in dealing with her MS since she was diagnosed with it in 1999. Sarah Atkinson, a colleague of Cath’s brother told her about some of the services MSRRF provide at Benmar House for people affected by MS and Cath now attends twice a week to exercise on the Vibrogym and receive sports massage therapies and reflexology.

Cath enjoyed running in the first Great North Run and subsequent runs but her condition meant she could no longer take part. However in September she took part in the 2013 Great North Run thanks to her husband Robin - who has completed every Great North Run since it started and has raised staggering amounts of money for charity - and daughter Rena.

Robin, Rena and Rena’s friend Rebecca Senior pushed Cath in her wheelchair the full length of the 13.1 mile course from Newcastle upon Tyne to South Shields.

The money raised in sponsorship and collections on the day will aid MSRRF’s project to develop a hydrotherapy pool at Benmar House.

Cath said “I really enjoyed being part of the Great North Run, although I was really nervous on the morning of the event. Conditions were not good but manageable and people generously donated to our cause along the route.”

“When I first went along to Benmar House, I was very surprised by how much it had to offer and I really benefit from each visit. The people there are wonderful and they provide a range of therapies for people with different stages of MS.”

The charity gives service users information to help them and their families deal with MS and it also contributes to research into the condition. Fundraising for the hydrotherapy pool started last year. The pool will help to relieve symptoms such as fatigue and pain and allow people with MS to exercise gently and safely without causing stress.

Mrs. Armstrong added: “It would be amazing to have such a specialist pool at Benmar House. It would make a massive difference to everyone who goes there because it’s important for people with MS to do as much exercise as possible.”

Cath set herself a personal target to raise £300 and to date she has raised the fantastic amount of £535.50 and together with Robin and Rena to date they have raised the tremendous total of £1125.50.

MSRRF therapist Joanna Ross-Knight also did the run in a superb time of 2hrs 05mins and raised over £300 for our charity.

On behalf of MSRRF I would like to thank Cath, Robin, Rena, Rebecca, Joanna and everyone else who took part in the run and raised funds for us. Your support is greatly appreciated — Dave Farham

Story courtesy of The News Post Leader.




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