News - 8th July 2019

Friends united! How fundraising for dementia research brings people together

John Rhodes Chris Larkin Geoff Cannell_arukparkrun

One of the best benefits of taking on a fundraising challenge for us is the chance to join the #TeamARUK community on Facebook.


It’s a place where hundreds of Alzheimer’s Research UK supporters share training and fundraising tips and support and encourage each other to achieve their goals.


We have a Facebook group for people taking on sporting events, such as RideLondon next month and the Great North Run in September. We also have a group for our Running Down Dementia challenge, which is in full swing with more than 4,000 people taking part this summer.


Lots of supporters have become friends through our Facebook groups. Among them are Geoff Cannell, John Rhodes and Chris Larkin who met through doing Running Down Dementia last year.


Last year Bromley parkrunner Geoff took on a series of running, cycling, swimming and triathlon events as well as clocking up 350km for Running Down Dementia. He raised over £2,500.


He found a kindred spirit in Lanhydrock parkrunner John who also took on various events while doing Running Down Dementia.


They are both doing Running Down Dementia again this summer and Geoff has signed up for another series of sporting events. John has joined him for two triathlons – Dorney Lake in May and Blenheim Palace last month – and they will be teaming up again for the Falmouth Triathlon in September.


Geoff Cannell (left) & John Rhodes Dorney Lake Triathlon 2019


Geoff and John also joined Chris, who is on a weight-loss mission and has so far lost 13st having once weighed nearly 37st, as he took on a challenge to swim from Boscombe Pier to Bournemouth Pier and back last month.


Geoff swam alongside Chris while John was on a longboard as they helped him complete the three-mile swim which took him four and a half hours and which he described as the ‘hardest thing I’ve ever achieved’.


Geoff said: “There’s such a great community among the Alzheimer’s Research UK supporters on Facebook. Everybody is really supportive, and they’ve certainly spurred me on to do more.


“I started doing sporting challenges to improve my health and I continue to do them because I enjoy the challenge and like to see what I’m capable of. It’s great to have met like-minded people through doing these challenges.”


If you’d like to become part of #TeamARUK and support dementia research, you can apply for a charity place in a sporting event or sign up to fundraise using your own place. Click here for more information.


There’s also still time to sign up for Running Down Dementia where we challenge you to run 100km (Pioneer), 300km (Epic) or your own choice of distance (Maverick) by August 31 and raise £100 or more. Sign up here.

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