Today marks the beginning of Expo, four days of fun-filled excitment at ExCeL in London where runners taking on the Virgin Money London Marathon will be registering this week!
Every year over 100 runners run 26.2 miles in aid of MS-UK, raising thousands of pounds for us. Over 100,000 people in the UK live with multiple sclerosis, and we want to be able to provide our vital services to everyone who needs them, so every single penny they raise goes towards helping MS-UK continue our work.
The MS-UK fundraising team is ready to welcome #TeamPurple to Expo this week, so if you're coming along please say hi to us on stand 583!
Wednesday 18 April 11:00-20:00
Thursday 19 April 10:00-20:00
Friday 20 April 10:00-20:00
Saturday 21 April 09:00-17:00
We'll be live tweeting all week from Expo (and of course on marathon day itself this Sunday) so follow us on Twitter to stay updated!
Jill Purcell, Fundraising Manager
This year MS-UK is commemorating 25 years of supporting people affected by multiple sclerosis, and I have a fun, easy way for you to show your support and get involved!
Just add our Twibbon to your Facebook or Twitter profile picture and help us celebrate our 25th anniversary!
There are lots of other ways to support us as well, just visit our website to find out more.
Jill Purcell, Fundraising Manager
With most of the country feeling the big freeze, here’s our top tips for travelling safe and keeping warm…
Find out more about our services to support people affected by multiple sclerosis (MS) on our website.
Fiona Sakal, who has been a Trustee of MS-UK for over decade, recently joined us in the office for a week to see what we do to support people affected by multiple sclerosis (MS) on a daily basis. We couldn't resist asking for an interview, and we started off with a 'two truths and a lie' question...
Two truths and a lie…
I was born and raised in Germany
I qualified for the Olympic Equestrian team
I was Cabin Crew, based at London Heathrow
Read on to find out all about Fiona…
I joined the board of MS-UK in 2007, when we were still MSRC and working from Peartree Industrial Estate with three car parking spaces, one toilet and not enough windows. My brother-in-law had MS for 24 years and although I was not fortunate enough to meet him, the impact his condition had on the rest of the family remains, so I was delighted to be asked to join the Board of Trustees.
Obviously, I was full of enthusiasm and committed to running the Virgin Money London Marathon the following spring! I definitely did not take into account the enormity of the training schedule that had to fit in alongside my final law exams, a full house renovation and a wedding. Ten years later and
I am almost ready to commit again, but not quite!
When Peter and I married in 2008 we decided that we would like to raise money for the charity rather than receive gifts. We were overwhelmed by the generosity of family, friends and clients and with the help of Roger Dakin and a game of heads and tails at our wedding reception, we raised £12,000.
Fast forward 11 years and two little girls, I am still as passionate about MS-UK as ever and love to get involved wherever possible. Under the leadership of Amy, the charity has grown to such an extent that I was beginning to need a flow chart to understand how everything fit together and wasn’t confidant that I was able to contribute effectively as a trustee. So here I am!
I have really enjoyed my ‘work experience’ and have found it invaluable to get to know everybody and experience first-hand what each role entails, both in the office and at Josephs Court. The atmosphere is very warm and welcoming and it is clear that everyone has a real passion for what they do. I am incredibly proud to represent MS-UK and excited to see what we can achieve in the future.
So, what was the lie?
I qualified for the Olympic Equestrian team!
During the event our runners heard from us about the next steps in the lead up to Virgin Money London Marathon and we shared some top fundraising ideas.
We also had some guest speakers! Our first speaker was John Trory who has been supporting MS-UK for 18 years. John spoke about his running experiences, the highs and the lows. This will be his 45th marathon in 2018!
Next up was Jessica Armstrong who as well as running for MS-UK is a sports therapist professionally. Jessica shared some top tips about stretches for warm up and cool down as well as doing some live strengthening exercises.
We then heard from Sheena Watts who ran her first marathon last year. During Sheena’s inspirational talk she said if she can do a marathon anyone can and was full of top tips for surviving a first marathon!
The finale was led by father and son team Chris and John Bradshaw. Chris ran his first marathon for MS-UK in 2017 and in 2018 he will be running along with his dad who will be 61 years old. Chris and John were full of great advice and showed a very entertaining video which they had put together. Chris’s favourite running regime is to run at 5am which energises him for the day and he starts the day raring to go!
The biggest tip that came across during the evening was pick a training plan that works for you, the warm ups and cool downs are as important as the training to prevent injury and preparation is key!
Thanks again to Tijmen Wigchert and CBW for hosting the event for us and providing the refreshments.
Our brilliant Virgin Money London Marathon team help us continue our work supporting people affected by multiple sclerosis, and it was amazing to see so many before the big day arrives in 2018!
Jill Purcell, Fundraising Manager
Hi, My name is Florence, and I have recently embarked upon what will hopefully be just the beginning of my MS-UK volunteering journey. After a few tumultuous months of post-uni panic I decided I was ready to start gaining some valuable vocational experience in the marketing department of a local charity. From various internships and volunteering posts which I have enjoyed in the past I made the decision that the marketing path was the most suitable direction for me to take in the charity sector. The MS-UK marketing department has provided the perfect environment for me to pick up key skills and techniques necessary for success in the charity marketing world. I wanted to share a few top tips which have helped me to ensure that I have gained a wealth of knowledge and experience from my limited time here at MS-UK…
Find out more about MS-UK and meet our team on our website!
On Monday 13 November Nileema (our Counselling Coordinator) and myself went along to the MS Trust conference in Hinckley, Leicester!
The MS Trust is a UK charity that produce multiple sclerosis (MS) information and support MS specialist health professionals. This year they celebrated their 21st annual conference, welcoming some 300 guests to learn, share expertise and focus on improving care for people living with MS.
We went along to seminars about sharing best practice and understanding MS and mental health. At the plenary session we learnt more about high risk MS drugs and keeping safe, as well as understanding and supporting risk perception to people with MS. All of the speakers were excellent, and it was a fantastic day.
Nileema and I also spoke to people about our new service – MS-UK Counselling. This is a brand new telephone counselling service for people living with MS in the UK. You can find out more and register on our website at www.ms-uk.org/counselling.
Thank you to the MS Trust for making us feel so welcome, and thank you to all of the MS professionals who stopped by our stand and chatted with us.
Looking forward to next year’s conference!
On Saturday 28 October our clients at Josephs Court got together for our swinging 60s cyclothon – and it was a great day!
Thank you to everyone that got involved…you managed to clock up over 300 kilometres! Check out the Facebook photo album now.
The cyclothon event is part of our FES Appeal. We are aiming to raise £22.5k for a brand new FES bike for Josephs Court. This is our Essex based wellness centre for anyone affected by multiple sclerosis in our local area.
Thank you again for a groovy day everyone!
Diana Crowe, Head of Services
Hello everyone, Yesterday (Sunday 30 July) we cheered our hearts out to support the dedicated cyclists who pedalled 100 miles for the Prudential RideLondon, and it was an amazing afternoon!
You can check out the photos on Facebook now!
Huge congratulations are in order for our MS-UK team who have trained so hard for the past months in all types of weather, cycling to conquer this prestigious event. We were so proud to see them all with a smile on their face as they went past our cheering point and on to the finish line in style.
The total funds raised so far have reached over the £2,000 mark and counting. This is a huge achievement and an amount that our riders have been working tirelessly to raise. We hope they all had a well-earned break after the race and they aren’t too achey today!
For most of the fundraising team it was our first time seeing the event and we thoroughly enjoyed the day, cheering on our riders with our megaphones and rapper clappers from our cheering point on Whitehall.
We couldn’t support our MS-UK teams in the way that we do without our super volunteers, so here’s a massive thank you to them too! We are really lucky to have some regular key volunteers at our events, and it just wouldn’t be the same without them. We always need volunteers for events to help them run smoothly.
Of course, we’re opening applications for next year’s event straight away. So if you’re interested in cycling the Prudential RideLondon, get in touch with me by email or call on 01206 226500 and secure your place now!
Well done again to everyone who took part,
Events Fundraiser, MS-UK
Hi everyone, I just want to say a massive well done to everyone who took part in the British 10k on Sunday 09 July in aid of MS-UK...you guys make our work possible!
It was a hot day (OK, it was a scorching day!) and you still got up early, made your way to our capital city and took to the streets in full force, wearing your purple with pride. It was fantastic to be a part of your day, and share in your achievement!
Our cheering point was definitely extremely loud and great fun to be on, and a massive thank you to all of our dedicated volunteers who clapped and cheered for hours to encourage all of the runners to keep going. We couldn’t make the day so special without you.
All of our runners have their own reasons for running, but all of you have one thing in common now – you have smashed the British 10k! And you have made a difference…the money you have raised helps us offer people a listening ear when they need one through our helpline, ensure someone gets New Pathways magazine landing on their doormat or it may pay for new exercise equipment at our centre in Essex. You are making our work possible, to help people affected by MS to really live life to the full and make the most of today.