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Girls get active to help beat cancer

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Posted 1st August 2019

A group of secondary schools and colleges from across South Yorkshire and West Yorkshire have raised more than £11,000 for Cancer Research UK after taking part in Race for Life events.

Almost 260 young women and girls – the majority aged 14-19 – were supported through funding provided by Yorkshire Sport Foundation, through Sport England’s satellite club programme.  The money allowed the setup of weekly running groups to engage those who don’t typically take part in other sport and physical activity.  In total, thirteen schools or colleges were involved.

Girls attended weekly running sessions for a minimum of 10 weeks, and were provided free entry and t-shirts for the 5k or ‘Pretty Muddy’ races that took place across the two counties in June and July.

The Race for Life is Cancer Research UK’s biggest series of fundraising events. Taking place across the UK, the events include 5k and 10k routes for participants to walk, jog or run, as well as Pretty Muddy obstacle events.

As part of the funding conditions, all the groups will continue to offer those who took part the opportunity to keep active, either through sustaining their running groups, or other activity.  A number of those involved intend to take part again in 2020, as well as entering similar events.

Pupils at Sheffield College raised over £3,000, and Omzah Khan, Curriculum Leader Level 1 & 2 Health and Social Care at the College said: It’s great that we’ve been able to get young people to participate in the event, and motivating them to be confident enough to enter and complete.

“Many of those who took part were inactive before the event, but after completing it have become more confident in their own ability and are now becoming more active.

“One of the students who participated was visually impaired and the experience for her was empowering and the first time that she has ever been involved in this type of activity.”

Debra Cummins, Development Manager for Children and Young People at Yorkshire Sport Foundation, added: “It’s the fifth year that we’ve worked in partnership with Cancer Research UK, and a number of local schools and colleges.  We’re delighted with the success of the project on so many levels.

“The fundraising total is fantastic, and all those who were involved should be incredibly proud of themselves.

“Statistics show us that women and girls are less active than their male counterparts, and there’s a significant drop-off in participation among teenage girls.  By creating these running groups, it’s helped a large number of girls overcome some of the barriers to taking part, and experience the benefits physical activity brings to their physical and mental wellbeing.”

“A huge thank you and well done to everyone that has taken part in Race For Life this year, this is a huge achievement for everyone which has raised an amazing amount of money for Cancer Research UK. Taking part in our Race for Life events enables like-minded people to get together and remember loved ones lost to cancer or celebrate the lives of those who have survived.

“At the same time, they are helping to make a difference to people with cancer, right now. The money that they have all raised will make a huge difference to the work Cancer Research UK are able to do to continue to fund research to fight 200 types of cancer.”

Click HERE for more information on satellite clubs.

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