Sunday, 26 May 2024
Sunday, 26 May 2024

London woman running marathon to raise money for military charity

A woman from London is running the London Marathon to raise money for Blind Veterans UK, the national charity for vision-impaired ex-Service men and women.

Roxana Chu from East London will be taking on the 26.2-mile London Marathon on 23 April.

Roxana volunteers as a telephone friend for the charity Age UK and for over a year has been in regular contact with veteran Peter.

Peter, who is in his 80s, served in the Royal Air Force and receives support from Blind Veterans UK. 

Roxana said:

“Peter has such high praise for Blind Veterans UK; he has nothing but good things to say about the support he’s received from the charity over the past four years.

“He’s told me all about his stays at the charity’s Centre of Wellbeing in Brighton and how his visits are the highlight of his year. I hope that by fundraising for Blind Veterans UK, I can do my bit to ensure that veterans like Peter can continue to enjoy the support and hospitality of the charity for years to come.

“Peter also had the opportunity to take part in a cookery course with the charity to help him learn ways in which to prepare and cook safely following his sight loss and has been provided with a text reading machine which reads letters that are sent to him. 

“I treat Peter like an uncle and that is why I want to show my support for Blind Veterans UK. It will be a huge honour to run on behalf of such a phenomenal charity and I’ll know that with every step I take, wearing my Blind Veterans UK running top, I’ll be raising awareness for the charity and that means the world to me.”

Roxana took up running two years ago, starting with park runs and her love for running grew from there.

She said:

“I’m originally from Hong Kong but have lived in London for 20 years. The UK has some amazing scenery to explore and my love of planning a route and going for a hike has led to me taking on ultra-marathons around the country and elsewhere in the world. 

“In May last year, I signed up for my first 100km in the Peak District. Participants were invited to walk or run the route. My friend and I walked it and it took ten hours to finish the first 50km. We went to bed with our feet covered in blisters and knew we wouldn’t be able to carry on for the second 50km the following day. But I was inspired by those who were running the route and from then on, I started training seriously. 

“I am planning a number of runs this season including a 50km in February and a 75km run in May.

“An ambition of mine is to also complete the six major marathons in the world, this year I’ll be taking on Berlin as well as London and then over the next two years I shall hopefully run in Boston, New York, Chicago and Tokyo. 

“I’m not a person that races to achieve a particular time, but I enjoy the journey and always want to finish. I like the longer distances as they train my endurance.”

Roxana is employed by a top financial services company and is a representative on the organisation’s military and veteran committee.

She said:

“I’ve always been a supporter of military charities and this year for me is all about Blind Veterans UK. My organisation is very supportive of its employee’s charity work and offers paid volunteering hours. I’m excited to share my knowledge of Blind Veterans UK with my colleagues throughout the year.” 

If you would like to support Roxana in reaching her £2,000 target for Blind Veterans UK, please visit her fundraising page here: 2023tcslondonmarathon.enthuse.com/pf/roxana-chu.

If you are inspired by Roxana and would like to take on a challenge for Blind Veterans UK visit the charity’s website: blindveterans.org.uk/fundraise.

Blind Veterans UK supports thousands of blind veterans across the country but knows there are many thousands more who still need its support to rebuild their lives after sight loss.

If you, or someone you know, served in the Armed Forces, including National Service, and are now struggling with sight loss, then please get in touch. Call 0800 389 7979 or visit blindveterans.org.uk/support.

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