650 women will take to the streets of Derby on Friday (27 June) for the Treetops Hospice Moonlight Walk.
It’s the fifth year for the fundraising event which is a 5k or 10k sponsored walk starting and ending at Derby University. This year’s walk is being sponsored by Western Power Distribution, and raises money for end of life care and bereavement support for families across Derbyshire and Nottinghamshire.
For the first time ever, a Treetops Hospice patient will take part in the walk. Brenda “B” Homiak from Long Eaton has multiple sclerosis and says she doesn’t know where she’d be if she hadn’t found Treetops.
“The first time I attended Day Care was a real eye-opener; seeing people my age and sometimes younger with MS and realising that it really can affect anyone. It is so good to have people to talk who are in the same situation. When I know I’m coming, I feel really good; knowing that I’ve got a day out to socialise and be looked after.”
B visits Treetops on Thursdays which are for adults with neurological conditions such as motor neurone disease and MS. She’ll be doing the Moonlight Walk in a wheelchair pushed by her friend Jan.
B added: “Treetops has done so much for me that I want to give something back, taking part in the Moonlight Walk is my way of doing that. “
Rosie Coates, community fundraiser at Treetops Hospice, said: “We are really happy to have B do the Moonlight Walk. As far as I know she’s the first patient of ours who’s ever taken part. B, more than most, understands how vital the care we provide is and I would urge those taking part to now try and raise as much money as possible so wecan help more people like B.”
At the last count 650 women had signed up. Also walking is Julie Fletcher from Watnall who is part of Ann’s Angels, in memory of Ann Peel from Long Eaton who died of lung cancer in May 2012. Also part of the group is Julie’s sisters Jenni Fletcher and Kelly Dallard, both from Long Eaton.
Julie said: “We were nursing our mum at home and it was becoming clear she needed care through the night. The pain would come on so suddenly and we would need to get up but we couldn’t actually do anything for her. That was when we asked Treetops Hospice for help. The nurses were incredible, they could administer pain relief and it meant we could sleep. We all had jobs so to do full time caring as well was really difficult.”
The walk with being at 10pm and start and end at the University of Derby’s Kedleston Road Campus.