Putting the ‘Fun’ in ‘Fundraising’ – Becky Newell talks Team Dynamo, Obstacle Course Racing and Good Causes
Mud, mayhem and merriment; the usual themes we associate with a Dirty Dozen Races’ obstacle course. But there is another side to the grubby antics; charity fundraising. Many of our intrepid racers like to use the opportunity to give something back to a cause close to their heart and to improve individual and team morale in the process!
Becky Newell, part of Team Dynamo, is one such competitor, and in today’s blog we find out exactly why her and her fellow team members have been so determined to hit their fundraising target for The Royal Marsden…
As a keen 5k and 10km runner I was looking for a new challenge and came across Dirty Dozen races in September last year. I thought it would be perfect- something completely out of the ordinary with interesting obstacles and lots of mud! I managed to persuade 4 of my friends (Mia Clarke, Dave Green, Rebecca Axcell, and Nick Kendall) to join me in the 6km London South race and we became ‘Team Dynamo’.
Although I have plenty of running experience, seeing the obstacles that the Dirty Dozen team have designed made me realise I needed to gain strength if I was to do well in the race, so I became committed to going to the gym, focusing on weight training and high intensity interval training, and changing my diet to include much more protein (which as a vegetarian I found quite challenging!). It was like a whole lifestyle change for me, and something I’ll be keeping up with after the race.
As part of the race I wanted to raise some money for the Royal Marsden cancer charity, because my 11 year old cousin Reece Puddington has been receiving treatment from there since he was diagnosed with Neuroblastoma , a rare childhood cancer, in 2008. After a relapse in 2012, he had been on an experimental drug trial, which gave him a year of a relatively normal life, so as a family we know how important funds are to the charity. I set up a Justgiving page with a target of £100, hoping my friends and family could help me reach my goal.
In December 2013, my family was given the devastating news that Reece’s cancer has progressed and is now terminal. Suddenly, my focus for the race was to raise as much money as I possibly could; I hate seeing my cousin in pain and not being able to do anything, but hoping that by raising money more research can be done by the Marsden so that hopefully other children won’t have to go through what Reece is going through.
Reece has been writing a blog on Facebook since he was diagnosed and since writing a bucket list in February, his page went viral, gaining over 35,000 likes from people all over the world, and appearing in all of the national newspapers. My justgiving page was shared on his page and I started to get donations from kind strangers which I’m so grateful for because it’s such an important cause to me.
I’ve now increased my fundraising target to £1000, and I can’t wait until 6th April to take on the Dirty Dozen Racescchallenge. I know the race might be tough, but if at any point I’m struggling, the thought of my cousin’s strength, bravery and determination will get me through.
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