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News > OH News > Henry's Great North Run 2023

Henry's Great North Run 2023

Henry Furbank (OH 2008-10) is raising money for Rett UK, who have supported his friend's young daughter
14 Aug 2023
Written by Henry Furbank
OH News
Henry Furbank
Henry Furbank

This September, I’ll be running the Great North Run for Rett UK.

Rett syndrome is a neurological development condition that effects the growth and development of very young children mainly little girls, for most it goes undetected until they hit the regression phase around 1 year old, where they begin to loose acquired skills and become more withdrawn.

I knew nothing about Rett until my close friends, Rachel and George’s little girl Grace was born. Grace was diagnosed very early with Rett syndrome at around 4 months old and has battled through a very difficult 3 years, always with a smile on her face. Recently, Grace has also been diagnosed with epilepsy which further puts the pressure on what is already a tough time for my friends. 

Rett UK has two main aims; to support families like Grace’s and to raise awareness about Rett syndrome. They are a non-government-funded charity and have been invaluable to George and Rachael over the past 3 years. 

As with all charities, they can not do the work they do without the generosity of donors. And to help them continue the amazing support they provide families up and down the country, George decided to run the Great North Run, and when Rachel asked my wife, Hollie, if she thought I’d run it with him, I didn’t have to think twice (mainly cause Hollie had already said yes). 

Now you may have guessed, neither myself nor George are built for running, let alone long distances. I only run for two reasons - to catch a bus or after a rugby ball, so the concept of running for fun is very alien to me. But run, walk, or crawl, we will get over the line together. 

Training has been a bit stop-start unfortunately, trying to fit around work family, and holiday commitments and now as we draw closer to the rugby season, I lose a couple of nights a week.  I managed to get myself consistently running 3-4 times a week but in the last few weeks, that has dropped off a bit. Fingers crossed in 6 weeks time on 10 September, I will have done enough.

If anyone could spare anything at all, I know times are tough but any donation however large or small will be greatly received. And if you can’t donate please read up on Rett syndrome and spread the word as awareness is so important.

www.justgiving.com/george-elliott

Rett UK and What is Rett syndrome?

 

Grace with her Dad, George


 

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