Paula Radcliffe and family

Paula's Christmas Plea

Join Paula Radcliffe in 50-mile Christmas fundraiser...

Marathon legend Paula Radcliffe is urging UK families to get involved in a Christmas fundraising event to support the building of the first children’s cancer hospital in sub-Saharan Africa.

On Christmas Eve, along with her daughter Isla, who was diagnosed with cancer last year, Paula will lead a group of runners including the world’s greatest marathoner, Eluid Kipchoge, and reigning 800m Olympic Champion Emmanuel Korir, on a 50-mile relay from the equator to the site of the new hospital.

Once there, Isla, who has recovered from cancer after treatment, and a young Kenyan cancer patient, will together break ground to mark the start of the building.

The Shoe4Africa Foundation opened East and Central Africa’s first public children’s hospital in 2015, in Eldoret, and is again working with Moi Teaching and Referral Hospital and the Kenyan government to provide a public institution that will immediately start saving children's lives in Kenya

Paula is asking families and schools to join her fundraising campaign and run their own 50-mile relay challenge. Using her own successful Families on Track concept, can sign up for free as a family or school class, pledging to collectively run 50 miles by 24 December. For each team that raises over £50 on its JustGiving page, Paula will be sending all participants a special Nike t-shirt to say a huge thank you.

Recent numbers indicate that nine out of ten children diagnosed with cancers are dying in Kenya, and indeed in sub-Saharan Africa. That statistic is one out of ten in the western world - the exact opposite.

Paula commented: “I am honoured to work with and help in some small way Shoe4Africa in the amazing and vitally important work that they do. It broke my heart to hear the shocking statistics for paediatric cancers in Africa and that there was not a single specialist children’s cancer hospital.

"We were beyond fortunate to live in a part of the world where the medical care was excellent for Isla, and we still found it tough. We want to do all that we can to help any family going through this and to raise awareness and funds, for facilities that give all children the opportunity and medical care that they deserve.”

For full details on how to join Paula and Isla virtually in the Equator Relay challenge visit the Families On Track website.


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