Ground-breaking research has inspired one local couple to hit the road for this year’s Taylor Wimpey Tees Pride 10k.
Sue and Jonathan Barry will join thousands of other runners, walkers and charity fund-raisers on the start line of the 2016 flagship event on Sunday, September 4.
The couple will be raising funds for the MS Society after Sue was diagnosed with relapse/remission multiple sclerosis in 2008 at the age of just 28.
She was having regular relapses while doctors tried different medications to see which one would have help to reduce the relapse periods.
About 18 months ago she started receiving a monthly intravenous treatment called Tysabri which has dramatically improved the severity and number of the relapses she suffers.
The couple were so grateful for the support they have received they pledged to run the 2016 Taylor Wimpey Tees Pride 10k – followed by this year’s Great North Run the following Sunday.
Jonathan, who works for 3k Fun Run sponsors SABIC as an Ethylene Control Technician at Wilton, is also hoping to encourage those SABIC employees not running for charity to help raise funds to support the excellent research work the MS Society do.
Jonathan, from Stokesley, said: “Sue and I are running the Tees Pride 10k and believe that without all the research into the treatment of MS we would be in a bad place at such an early age but because of the treatment she is on she leads a fairly normal life with occasional mild symptoms.
“The money raised for research by the MS Society has been massively helpful to us.”
SABIC are sponsoring the 3K Fun Run but are providing free running places for employees in both the 3K and 10K as part of the company’s Health and Wellbeing programme.
SABIC will also match fund the total amount raised for the MS Society as part of its Corporate and Social Responsibility Programme.
SABIC Site Director John Bruijnooge said: “It is truly incredible that with the research into MS and subsequent treatment Sue is not only leading a relatively normal life, she is also able to compete in challenging races such as the 10k and Great North Run.
“I hope that as many of Jonathan’s workmates as possible will join him and Sue to either jog, walk or run the SABIC 3K or Taylor Wimpey Tees Pride 10K to raise as much money as possible for this very worthwhile charity.”
Councillor Lewis Young, Middlesbrough Council’s Executive Member for Culture, Leisure and Sport, said: “Raising funds for good causes is one of the real driving forces behind people making the commitment to take part in both the Tees Pride 10k and the SABIC 3k Fun Run.
“Sue and Jonathan’s story is inspiring, and is a great example of how people go the extra mile to give something back to the causes that have helped them.
“I’m sure they will have a fantastic experience at the 10k, and it will stand them in good stead for the challenge ahead in the Great North Run.”