Barry Hunt, the longest-standing Trustee of Ataxia UK has run an ultra-marathon in the 'Run to the Sea’ event in Bournemouth on Saturday 16 October.
Since 1999, Barry has been supporting Ataxia UK and is also part of Ataxia UK's Scientific Advisory Committee. Barry’s 'Run to the Sea'; a point-to-point 50km multi-terrain route from Ringwood to Hengistbury aims to raise £5,000 to help fund research into treatments and a cure for ataxia. Barry’s daughter Holly has Friedreich's ataxia, and ever since he found out about her condition, he has been actively supporting and helping Ataxia UK grow.
Ataxia means ‘lack of order’ and is an umbrella term for a group of neurological conditions that affect people’s balance, coordination and speech. Often people first notice a problem when they realise they’ve been falling over more than usual, struggling to walk in a straight line or have become more clumsy. As the condition progresses, walking may become difficult or even impossible, so people may need to use a wheelchair to get about some or all of the time. The ataxias affects people of all ages and some children, particularly with Friedreich’s ataxia, are in a wheelchair from early childhood. You can read more about ataxia at www.ataxia.org.uk.
There is no cure, but there is hope. Ataxia UK funds research into treatments and a cure for all of the ataxias. This explains Barry’s exceptional effort in doing his best to raise money for crucial ataxia research: he is hopeful, and hope is what makes us strong.
Barry said: "I joined the charity 20 years ago after my daughter Holly was diagnosed with Friedreich’s ataxia. At that stage, I thought that there was a need to encourage a wider portfolio of innovative projects for Ataxia UK, thereby changing their research strategy and to do that fundraising was crucial. In 2021 we are now supporting 11 research groups and continue to look to fund new and innovative research approaches that will benefit those with ataxia. So, any donations will really make a difference.”
Sue Millman, CEO of Ataxia UK, said: “Barry has been supporting Ataxia UK for over 20 years as both a Trustee and Scientific Advisor. In 2002 he ran the London Marathon to raise money. We are so grateful that he is doing yet another run for us.”
Want to get involved and support Barry Hunt? Show your support with a donation at: http://bitly.bz/SMgj1 to help fund scientific research into the ataxias.
For more information visit ataxia.org.uk or facebook.com/ataxiauk