A WHITBY cancer victim has appealed for residents to join in with a charity walk on 12 May that will help raise money for people who are affected by cancer.
Macmillan Cancer Support is hosting the 13-mile Whitby walk and Katrina Stead, former actress and principal at Whitby’s Paul Nicholas School of Acting and Performing Arts, is encouraging people to get involved.
She was diagnosed with cancer in 1997 and described how Macmillan provided much-needed support throughout this extremely difficult period.
She said: “I knew when I met the specialists that it was cancer, I could see it on their faces.
“I wanted to know what I was fighting and I was assigned my Macmillan nurse called Sue when the treatments began.”
Mrs Stead was just getting over the premature birth of her son who was just 20 months old when she was diagnosed and she added: “I was just feeling healthy again when this happened.
“After facing the uncertainty of whether you’re going to live or die, and then feeling so awful for 21 days of each month due to the chemotherapy, it was really good to have some support from Sue.
“I could afford everything to her and she would take it all in her stride and advise about all sorts of things.”
Thankfully due to the treatments and alternative medicines, Katrina is doing well, and now supports the charity that made such a difference.
“Having cancer is the most frightening, loneliest place in the world,” she said.
“Even though you have wonderful people helping you, it’s only you and your body fighting it on your own and that was something I had to face.
“Macmillan are a wonderful charity and I hope that lots of people will take part in the walk to help the charity reach more people who need help.”
Macmillan’s fundraising manager Sally Millington is hoping at least 200 walkers will take part in the event and so far 67 people have signed up.
She said: “It’s fantastic that so many people have registered to be a part of this wonderful walk in Whitby which will make a big difference and we would like others to join us.
“We rely on donations for 96% of our income and without your help, we wouldn’t be able to support people like Katrina and her family during such a difficult time in their lives.
“It’s the toughest fight most of us will ever face and we hope that people will join our walk and help to raise the vital funds.”
The Whitby Walk will start at the Leisure Centre and heads out to Sandsend along the beach, passing through Lythe and East Barnby to Runswick Bay, then returning along the old railway track along the Whitby cliffs.
To sign up visit www.macmillan.org.uk/walking or call 0300 1000 200.