LETTER TO EDITOR: Going the extra mile to support people living with cancer


Going the extra mile

Whether you’re a seasoned pro or a complete beginner, taking on an event like the 2021 Virgin Money London Marathon is a huge personal challenge

However, I know first-hand taking part and crossing that finish line is a feeling like no other, and I can guarantee every runner really does make a huge difference to charities like Macmillan Cancer Support.

As Macmillan CEO, I know our work relies on the fundraising of our extraordinary supporters, who are willing to go that extra mile – or 26 miles in this case – to raise the vital funds that enable our services and healthcare professionals to do whatever it takes to support those affected by cancer.

Regardless of time or ability, not only can each of the 100,000 participants who sign up for this year’s record-breaking event feel immensely proud of their achievement, but also every pound raised and every step taken towards that finish line directly enables charities like Macmillan Cancer Support to edge closer to their aim to be there for everyone who needs it most.

There’s no denying this is an acutely challenging time for everyone, particularly those people currently having to deal with not only the stress and anxiety the COVID-19 pandemic has brought, but also living with cancer.

There’s never been a scarier time in living memory to receive a cancer diagnosis, and by 2030, it’s estimated there will be four million people living with cancer in the UK.

Unfortunately the coronavirus pandemic means people with cancer need our help more than ever, but at the same time, it has stopped us from raising the money we need to support them.

This means many of our services are underfunded and at real risk, so your donations and fundraising efforts have never been more important.

We want to assure you we are doing whatever it takes to make sure our vital support continues to be available, but this is only possible thanks to those of you who’ve supported us.

Money fundraised through events like the 41st Virgin Money London Marathon will help Macmillan do whatever it takes to help everyone living with cancer.​ From financial to emotional support, over the phone or online, we will move mountains to make sure people with cancer feel supported, reassured and informed and this is only possible thanks to our supporters.

Which is why Macmillan – who are hugely proud to be the official 2021 Virgin Money London Marathon Charity of the Year – would love to invite your readers to consider joining #TeamMacmillan and run for us – and those living with cancer – in October.

For the lucky runners who have bagged themselves a ballot spot in this year’s Virgin Money London Marathon, please do consider joining Team Macmillan, and for those who may have missed out, there is still time to apply for a Macmillan charity place or sign up to the Virtual Virgin Money London Marathon.

To apply, please visit: LondonMarathon.Macmillan.org.uk.

We won’t stop until we can be there for everyone affected by cancer, and we know you won’t either.

Signed Lynda Thomas, Macmillan Cancer Support CEO and London Marathon runner (2018)