Melton Mayor launches gruelling family fundraisers for young cancer patients
The Mayor of Melton and his son are preparing to take on two gruelling fundraising challenges to help children and young people with cancer.
Councillor Peter Faulkner (62) will do a marathon walk on April 30 next year and his 36-year-old son, Mark, is to swim 22 miles the following day.
They are also organising a family ‘It’s A Knockout’-style event on the May Day Bank Holiday Monday with proceeds from everything going to the Young Lives vs Cancer cause.
The Mayor admits he is nervous about the 26-mile challenge he is taking on and he has started training for it with walks between Melton Mowbray and surrounding villages and bike rides with Mark.
Explaining why he chose the charity for his year in office in the top civic role, he said: “A family we’ve known for years had a child diagnosed with a very aggressive form of Leukaemia and we wanted to do something to help the family.
“When I became Mayor, I asked the family which charities had helped and they suggested Young Lives vs Cancer.
“The other link to the charity is Sir Malcolm Sargent, who used to be the choir master at St. Mary’s Church in Melton Mowbray.”
The Malcolm Sargent Cancer Fund was set up in 1967 in his memory and it then merged with CLIC to form CLIC Sargent in 2005 and later had a name change to Young Lives vs Cancer in May this year.
Peter and Mark are well known in the town for their work with the family cab firm, Elaine’s Taxis, and they hope local people will sponsor them to raise extra vital funds for the charity.
Mark said: “It was an obvious choice of charity to support as Young Lives vs Cancer really do care and support families at the worst of times.
“I’m feeling nervous as it’s a long way to swim for a long time.
“I’ve got plenty of training to do and I just keep thinking about how many people I will be helping by doing this and that’s what keeps me going.”
Last year in Leicestershire, Young Lives vs Cancer helped 148 families to face cancer, giving out 92 financial grants to the value of £17,100, helping families to cope with the costs of cancer.
The East Midlands fundraising engagement manager for the charity, Max Baker, said: “We want to say a big thank you to the Mayor and his family for taking on this challenge.
“The money raised will help us to continue to be there for children and young people and their families to face cancer and everything it throws at them, from having to be away from friends and family to missing school and work to the financial impact it creates.
“Best of luck to Peter and Mark and all of the family as they take on these incredible fundraising challenges.”
To donate money towards Peter’s fundraising, text MAYORWALK to 70085 to donate £5 or to support Mark, text SWIM to 70470 to donate £5.
Texts will cost the donation amount plus one standard network rate message.