Jo's Cervical Cancer Trust was recommended to me by a nurse at the hospital when I went in for treatment following an abnormal smear test and the support I found on there, particularly when waiting for results, was immense. Their helpline and forum was a lifeline to me in those weeks. I found it very difficult to talk to friends as I was so angry and didn't want to upset them and Jo's provided me that outlet to vent, digest and wallow when needed.
As a runner, I like to have a charity which I fundraise for when I can. I picked Jo's as without the support of the Trust and the ladies like me who frequent their forums looking for answers to questions we dare not ask, I am not sure how I would have gotten through in one piece. Since my experience, I have run three half marathons and one marathon and during each event Jo's is firmly on my mind. I realise how lucky I am to be able to do the things I love and work out ways I can raise not just funds but awareness for such a great cause.
If someone were to ask me how I raise money there wouldn't be just one answer. There are so many ways to do it and a lot of my inspiration came from google believe it or not. Forums such as yahoo or netmums are a treasure trove of ideas and it's nice to be able to do something a little different to asking for sponsorship.
Fundraising activities such as 'bake to order' cupcakes where the profits from orders are donated to the charity, quiz nights and raffles have been a big hit. This year my running partner and I also held a fitness challenge where friends, family, colleagues and local fitness clubs paid £6 to enter and they had to complete a specific distance in a set time in order to get a medal.
Raising funds for Jo's in particular is fantastic, as it's not only close to my heart but they are also really supportive and grateful for anything you raise. I haven't always found that the case with some other charities but Jo's checks in, makes sure I am doing ok and if I need anything; I really do appreciate that.
So far in the last 12 months my running partner and I have raised over £4000 for various charities; including Jo’s and it really does show that it's amazing what you can do if you put your mind to it.
If you'd like to fundraise for Jo's, find inspiration here