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Forkhill couple’s marathon run to aid children’s cancer charity

August 11, 2014

Forkhill couple’s marathon run to aid children’s cancer charityA Forkhill couple plan to take part in next month’s half-marathon event in Belfast to raise vital funds for the children’s cancer charity, CLIC Sargent.

Stephen and Denise McCabe are encouraging support for their challenge, calling on locals to join them in a ‘run for home’, to aid the charity’s ‘Homes from Home’ appeal.

Denise was just five years old when diagnosed with a cancerous tumour in her eye.  Now a mother of two boys, she fully appreciates the stress and impact this news would have had on her parents.  With long periods spent in hospital, undergoing surgery, receiving chemotherapy and radiotherapy, she knows first hand how difficult it was for her parents to try and maintain a normal family home life for her and sister, Donata.

Denise has been an incredible supporter of CLIC Sargent NI and has organised numerous events to raise funds awareness of the work they do to support children and young people with cancer.  Now, with her husband Stephen, she will pound the streets of Belfast to take part in the Deep RiverRock Belfast City Half Marathon to raise funds for the event’s official nominated charity.

Describing how the work of CLIC Sargent had such a positive impact on her family, Denise said: “I was very lucky to have beaten cancer but little did I know that was just the beginning.  The difficulties my parents faced was not only having to deal with a sick child but to also try and maintain a normal family atmosphere at home.  It is only now having two sons of my own that I can fully appreciate the sacrifices my family made for me.  Tasks which were part of everyday life before hand, were now a challenge.  My father had to continue working to provide for us, whilst my mother had to juggle my constant travelling up and down to Belfast.  At weekends my mother would swap with my father and she would get to spend time with Donata whilst dad stayed with me.

“This is why I’ve devoted so much time and energy to such a worthy charity.  I know how valuable CLIC Sargent’s ‘Home from Home’ would have been to my family and I’m keen to do what I can to make sure they are available to other families.

“I would encourage anyone and everyone to support CLIC Sargent by taking part in the Deep RiverRock Belfast City Half Marathon and raising funds for the NI Homes from Home Appeal,” she added.

CLIC Sargent’s ‘Homes from Home’ Appeal aims to help families by building a second specialist home for teenagers and young people in close proximity to Belfast’s principal treatment centre and need help to raise £1 million to achieve this vision.

The Home from Home will be designed with the families and their circumstances in mind.  It will comprise of large en suite family bedrooms, communal living and kitchen spaces, a quiet room and age appropriate play space.

This Home from Home follows on from the first one opening earlier this year, just a few steps from the Royal Belfast Hospital for Sick Children.  The home will be provided free of charge – offering families the ability to remain close to their child while they undergo treatment as well as the chance to maintain a sense of a normal family life by keeping the whole family together.

Teresa Sloan, Appeal Director said; “We were delighted to have 3,000 runners take to the streets of Belfast on May 5th in the Deep RiverRock Belfast City Marathon to raise vital funds for CLIC Sargent’s Home from Home Appeal and we’re hoping that many will “Keep on Running for Home” in the Half Marathon.  2014 is a big year for the charity, earlier this year we opened Northern Ireland’s first ever ‘Home from Home’ for families of young children undergoing cancer treatments at the Royal Belfast Hospital for Sick Children. Although we are over half way, our fundraising focus is to develop a second Home from Home specifically designed for teenagers and young adults which will be located in close proximity to the City Hospital.”

The ‘Homes from Home’ appeal to date has received tremendous support from the people of Northern Ireland, but still has some way to go before reaching the fundraising targets.  So, if you’re a runner and are interested in getting involved in the 2014 half marathon, why not do it and ‘Run for Home’ for CLIC Sargent?  Any money raised will stay in Northern Ireland and will go directly to the NI ‘Homes from Home’ appeal.

The second Deep River Rock Belfast City Half Marathon will take place on Sunday 14th September, starting at 9am from the King’s Hall Pavilion and finishing at the same location.

Online entry is available now at www.belfastcityhalfmarathon.net.  The closing deadline for entries is Sunday 31st August 2014. NO ENTRIES will be accepted after this date

The Deep RiverRock Belfast City Half Marathon is sponsored by Athletics Northern Ireland, Daily Mirror, ASICS and U105.  This year’s official charity is CLIC Sargent Northern Ireland.

To learn more about CLIC Sargent’s ‘Homes from Home’ Appeal and to ‘Run for Home’ please visit:

www.clicsargent.org.uk/content/northern-ireland-appeal.

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