Saffron Walden Fabulous Business women get off Facebook and run for Max

PUBLISHED: 09:00 07 September 2012

Max's Runners and Max (front)

Max's Runners and Max (front)

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A BRAVE four-year-old boy is inspiring a group of Saffron Walden women to get off Facebook and take part in the town's 10k race later this month.

The women met through the Facebook group, Saffron Walden Fabulous Business Women, and have joined forces to raise awareness and money for Leukemia and Lymphoma Research.

The charity supports children like Max Rowlandson, who is more than halfway through a three-year course of treatment after being diagnosed with Acute Lymphoblastic Leukaemia in June 2010.

Owner of Design Essentials, Wendy Howell, who has organised the run on behalf of the Facebook group, said: “We wanted to show the spirit of these businesses and really demonstrate the efforts they make for the community. Max has been so brave, the least we can do for him is to get up and run.”

Some of the women involved are running, some are supporting, and some are giving donations. Whatever their contribution, collectively the group is amazed at the power online networking has had in bringing them together to fight for a common cause.

Kelly Compton, owner of Saffron Crafts, said: “There is a recession, but we are showing that you can still achieve your business dreams if you all work together and share expertise.

“Facebook has provided a perfect forum for this, and is now helping us raise money for Max.”

In 1960 when Leukaemia & Lymphoma Research was founded, childhood leukaemia was virtually a death sentence – now 90 per cent of children survive the most common form of childhood Leukaemia.

The treatment that Max – who started school for the first time this week – receives is a direct result of the research which the charity carries out. Just £50 will pay for a research nurse for one day to support patients entered into one of their ground-breaking clinical trials that deliver new treatments.

Max’s family, of Little Walden Road, has supported the charity and has been on its own fundraising drive to beat childhood blood cancers. Having helped raise £13,000 for the children’s cancer ward where he was treated at Addenbrooke’s Hospital, the brave youngster was joined by mum Jodie, dad Daniel and little sister India in taking part in cricket legend Ian Botham’s ‘Beefy’s Great British Walk’ in April to raise money for Leukaemia & Lymphoma Research.

Jodie said she has found training for the 10k race – organised by running club Saffron Striders – very hard but added: “I try to think of how brave and strong my son and his ‘battle buddies’ are and it helps me to push on.

“I’ll be running for them and for the two angels we have met along our journey who have sadly lost their fight. Unfortunately countless children have already lost their short lives to this horrid cancer. I will keep on going until the lives lost are none to count.”

To date the group has raised more than £800 towards its £1,500 target – to help them over the line visit justgiving.com/SWBusinessWomen

● Entries are still open for the Saffron Striders’ 10K race. The race, which starts and finishes at Newport Free Grammar, is on Sunday September 30 at 10.30am. There is also a shorter family fun run at 11.45am which is suitable for all ages.

Full details and an entry form are available at saffronstriders.org.uk.

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