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Dame Kelly Holmes prepares for the run of her life

by Press Release
Thursday 10th March 2016
Double Olympic Gold Medallist middle distance runner, Dame Kelly Holmes, is preparing for the run of her life by attempting the Virgin Money London Marathon on April 24, 2016 in a bid to raise £250,000 to split equally across five charities close to her heart.
The distance is 28 times more than her longest competitive race of 1,500m and Kelly is training hard to be able to complete the gruelling distance of 26.2 miles.
“I am really looking forward to the London Marathon but let’s get this straight: I am NOT a long distance runner and I’m 11 years older than when I was Olympic Champion 2004” says Kelly.  “I have had to completely reevaluate my training to get back into my running and preparing for this huge distance is a big challenge.  However, doing this for five really important charities is spurring me on,” she says.  “My goal is to raise £50,000 for each of the five charities so I’m going to need a lot of support from people to help me achieve this.”
Kelly is calling her campaign Kelly’s Heroes as she feels that everyone at the charities for whom she is running is a hero by giving their time and care to people in need.  “The work being done at these charities is phenomenal, life changing and, in some cases, life-saving.  Many of the charity staff work as volunteers and their selfless commitment is absolutely inspiring.  Like all charities they need donations and goodwill to survive,” says Kelly.  “Every pound is valuable and appreciated and I hope people will get behind my campaign and do what they can to support me and my chosen causes.”

Donate here: uk.virginmoneygiving.com/team/KellysHeros
Here Kelly explains why she has chosen these five charities and more details about the work they do can be found at each of their websites.
Mind UK (mind.org.uk)
Mind is a leading UK mental health charity which believes no one should have to face a mental health problem alone. The charity is there for everyone who needs its help: whether you’re stressed, depressed or in crisis. Its advisors will listen, give support and advice and fight the corner of everyone who needs help.
“Having suffered from depression and self-harming myself, my choice to support Mind is a very personal one,” says Kelly.  “More and more people, including children, are going through personal turmoil and it is important that I can help highlight and give awareness to the issues that are so often silenced.” 
Hospice in the Weald (hospiceintheweald.org.uk)
Hospice in the Weald provides compassionate, individual, holistic and supportive care for all patients with terminal illnesses, their families and carers. This care is provided to people in West Kent and part of East Sussex. It is not part of the NHS and needs £6 million each year to ensure its services can continue.
“My coach Dave Arnold who coached me for a total of 15 years passed away two years to the day after I won my 1500m Gold medal on August 28th,” says Kelly.  “I will never forget what he did to guide me as a 12 year old and how he then became a mentor in the latter years. He will never be forgotten in my heart and I have been a patron for the Hospice for many years.”
Myeloma UK (myeloma.org.uk)
Registered as a charity in 1997, Myeloma UK is the only UK cancer organisation dealing specifically with myeloma and its related disorders.  Its aim is to help myeloma patients live longer and with a better quality of life.
“My mother has been going through treatment for myeloma, and I am so pleased to say that the treatment she has received has been truly amazing, and she’s doing really well and is in remission,” says Kelly.  “Myeloma is an incurable cancer and it’s hard to treat because every case is unique. The money that goes to Myeloma UK will support research to make sure people like my mum get the treatment that’s right for them.”
Pickering Cancer Centre (pickeringcancercentre.org.uk)
The Pickering Cancer Centre aims to help and support anyone going through the emotional upset of cancer, from diagnosis onwards, be they patients, their partners, children, friends or carers. It offers a safe, relaxing, friendly environment where mutual support and information can be found, without the pressure of appointments or time restraints. It also offers a wide range of complementary therapies, such as reflexology, reiki, healing, massage, nutritional advice, yoga and counselling all free of charge.
“I met a lady called Polly on New Year’s Eve 2015 and was captivated by her passion for her charity,” says Kelly “Polly told me that when I was winning my second Gold medal she was told she had survived cancer for the second time and that was like her Gold! After visiting the cancer centre, which is run entirely by volunteers, I knew I wanted to help.”
Dame Kelly Holmes Trust (damekellyholmestrust.org)
Kelly set up the Dame Kelly Holmes Trust in 2008 to help get lives on track by using world class athletes to engage, enable and empower disadvantaged young people. At a time where there are more than one million 16-25-year-olds not in education, employment or training in the UK, this work is now more important than ever. Through a range of personal development programmes run across the country, every one of the young people receives mentoring and support from a world-class athlete.
“I am passionate about helping people reach their full potential and through the trust we are helping young people make long term life changes,” says Kelly.  “It is incredible to see someone who feels they have nothing to live for, make amazing personal transformations and I want to help secure the Trust’s future by raising essential funds.”  
Or text KRUN26 £10 to 70070
Follow Kelly on her honest journey @damekellyholmes on Twitter

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