Chai runners take part in Virgin Money London Marathon raising £28,000

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A group of six runners formed ‘Team Chai’ in this year’s Virgin Money London Marathon on Sunday 28th April, in aid of Chai Cancer Care. The event has raised £28,000 so far for the charity, which provides comprehensive, professional and expert services and care to any member of the Jewish community affected by a cancer diagnosis.

Rachel Mindell, one of Chai’s runners who took part in the 26.2 mile challenge, has so far raised an awesome £7,033 for Chai, far exceeding her initial target of £5,500. Rachel completed the marathon in 4 hours and 51 minutes. Prior to the marathon she said: “In taking on this challenge, running for Chai is making the whole experience particularly special. Chai has supported two of my grandparents when going through their cancer treatments and was key to getting them back on their feet for which I am very grateful for. As I train every day for the marathon knowing that I am supporting such an amazing cause, Chai gives me the motivation to push on…..even in the pouring rain!”

Following the marathon, Rachel said: “Running the marathon was an incredible once in a lifetime experience and I am delighted with the time I completed it in. Seeing friends and family in the crowds along with complete strangers cheering your name motivated me so much to push that little bit more and reach the finish line, as well as the thought of all the money I raised which is going to such a worthy cause. I wouldn’t switch the pain I am in now for anything!”

Nathan Djanogly completed the challenge in 4 hours 52 minutes and has so far raised an inspiring £4,768 for Chai. Nathan said: “I'm running the marathon because it's always been a dream of mine. In my final year of university I realised I'll never have more time to train so I went for it. I'm choosing to run for Chai because my aunty was diagnosed with cancer 5 years ago and Chai were there to help and support her.”

Andrew Moss completed the marathon in 5 hours and 16 minutes and has raised £4,296 so far. He said: “Two and a half years ago my wife, Larissa was diagnosed with breast cancer and thanks to the help of the people at Chai, who have offered constant support in the way of treatments, therapy and mentoring, I would love to give something back as only a mere gesture of our gratitude.”

Donna Bengio, who also ran for Chai, completed the marathon in 5 hours and 1 minute. Donna has raised over £3,500 so far. Prior to the challenge, she said: “Chai Cancer Care has been an organization I always seek to help not only because of how much they help people affected by cancer, but also by their general positive energy. Participating in this year’s marathon was a decision I decided to take to both challenge myself and help others at the same time. I am excited to test my limits in support of such a wonderful cause.”

Ricki Stone completed the route in 4 hours and 33 minutes and has raised £3,932 so far. She said: “After running the London Marathon once again for Chai and training for almost a year I have learnt that however hard and tough it was at times, it is by far not even a comparison to the dedication, amazing and also very difficult work that chai provides for our community. Now that this run is over I guess time will tell which marathon around the world I will be running in next.....”

Alex Rickman, another of Chai’s runners, completed the route in 5 hours and 21 minutes and has raised over £4,424, far exceeding her target of £2,200. She said: “Running was never easy for me. I prefer press ups to running miles so when I eventually decided to take part in the marathon I knew I needed a charity to support that means a lot to me. Chai was the obvious choice. They had helped a family very close to me through their hardest time and I wanted to be able to support them doing that for others. I never appreciated the impact of running for a charity could have on training but through those tough and gruelling runs (there are lots!) people’s generosity keeps you going.”

Louise Hager, Chai’s Chairman, said: “What ‘Team Chai’ have achieved is awe-inspiring! I’d like to congratulate and thank all our runners for their commitment and dedication over the many months of training and through all their efforts, Chai can continue to be there for all those who turn to us. The Community continue to ‘run by our side’!