This year’s Run and Walk for Life will be like no other as the Solas Cancer Support Centre makes radical changes to their annual event.

October’s fundraiser will be a virtual one with the message that it is YOUR Run and Walk for Life-YOUR way.

Participants will get to choose their distance, their route, their day and their time while undertaking their own challenge.

Organisers hope to encourage family and friends from all over the world to take part in October. The aim this year is to see the iconic orange UPMC sponsored t-shirts from Sydney to Shanghai, Hanoi to Helsinki.

Chair of the Solas Cancer Support Centre, Barry Monaghan, explains what this event means to the charity: “With no government funding in 2019 the charity was 96% funded by public donations and this huge community effort allows us to sustain the service each year. We were very proud to have been able to support a record number of 964 clients in the 2019 calendar year, which was a 35% increase on the preceding year – which itself had been a record.

“2020 started with a further 19% increase in people using the Centre’s services in Waterford city and an ever-increasing uptake in our west-Waterford satellite centre based in Dungarvan”, he continued.

“Unfortunately, our face to face work stopped in line with government guidelines in mid-March while all our planned fundraising events were cancelled at the same time. This year will be a challenging year for us financially and we hope that we can count on the support we have received for the Run and Walk for Life over the last 13 years.”

Manager Tracy McDaid explains about the huge support received each year from the event sponsors: “This year we are extremely thankful to our event partners – Beat and UPMC Whitfield. Beat is a long-time sponsor and friend while we offer UPMC Whitfield, who is joining us as headline sponsor for their first year, a warm welcome.”

Beat CEO Gabrielle Cummins says she’s pleased to be involved again this year: “The last few months have been challenging for all of us but COVID-19 has also made us stop, think and reassess what’s important.

“From a Beat perspective, the pandemic has taught us just how important a role radio plays in the lives of our listeners.  We strive to foster that community spirit. One of the ways we do that is through our media partnerships & we’re immensely proud of the long-standing association we have with Solas Cancer Support Centre.

“Each of our 165,000 weekly listeners across the five counties of the South East knows someone who has been affected by cancer. Cancer patients, their friends and family need all the support they can and Solas provides that valuable support through an array of services. Now more than ever, the Solas Cancer Support Centre needs the public’s help. We’d like to help get the team’s important message out there that they’re back open & ready to serve as many clients as possible.”

Beat CEO Gabrielle Cummins

Also attending the launch was Ms Trish Lane, General Manager of UPMC Whitfield Hospital, who said: “UPMC is delighted to partner yet again with the Solas Cancer Support Centre: “To become the main sponsor of the Solas Run for Life for the next three years was an easy decision to make given the fact that the proceeds benefit cancer patients and their families from the South East”, she added.

For online registration visit The registration fee is €25 per adult and €15 per child and this fee includes the iconic orange t-shirt.

The Solas Cancer Support Centre reopens its doors on Monday 20th July in Waterford City and in Dungarvan. The service is open daily and in line with guidelines around COVID-19 offers a range of supports including Counselling and Art Psychotherapy, Information and printed booklets along with on-line wellness programs. For enquiries please call the Solas Cancer Support Centre on 051 304604 or email [email protected].

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