10 learn to row for breast cancer charity challenge

The group will be taking part in Burton Regatta for Trent RC this weekend in their ‘Rowing Abreast’ challenge


The challenge is the brain child of Ali Adams, a very inspirational woman from Mickleover, Derbyshire. Ali is a breast cancer survivor, diagnosed in May 2020, who went through a mastectomy, chemotherapy and radiotherapy. During Ali’s treatment she found much needed support from Every Cloud, who funded a family holiday giving respite and a chance to make special memories.

Now cancer free, Ali wanted to give back to the charity so looked for a fundraising team challenge that would match the mental strength, determination and endurance needed when facing any type of cancer. She realised that rowing was the perfect fit with the encouragement of her niece, Olivia Bates, and her doctor, who said, “It’s the best sport you can probably do once you’ve had a mastectomy for the recovery under the arms.” Trent RC proved to be ideal partners, teaching the group to row over the past six months.

All of the other members of the group – Sharon, Andi, Kim, Amy, Chandree, Amy, Alyssum, Rachel and Jon – are breast cancer survivors or their supports and range in age from their 30s to early 60s. Each has their own personal stories and motivation for wanting to take on this challenge. They’ll be supported by their mascot, Daisy, a black labrador who keeps a watchful eye over the whole crew, though particularly her human, Rachel. Daisy sometimes joins hitches a ride in the safety boat, loves swimming and sees herself as an unofficial Rescue Dog. Her ‘day job’ is being Therapy Dog for Sam’s Superheroes (a local Derbyshire charity).

Ali Adams, says, “Through this collaboration with TRC we will help people untap their true potential, spread a love of rowing and raise funds and awareness of Every Cloud. Cancer takes lives, changes lives, but will never beat love.” They’re already smashed their initial £3,000 target and are hoping to raise more to help more people.

This challenge would not be possible without the generosity of their sponsors who are helping fund the group’s kit, rowing fees and entry costs for the regatta. They would like to thank their main sponsor Mecca Bingo Burton together with their other sponsors: Green Blooms, Sam’s Superheroes, NG Chartered Surveyors, Don Amott Leisure Group and Every Cloud. They are enormously grateful to them all.

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