I am thrilled to announce that this year I will be cycling more than 1,400 miles with colleagues to raise funds for Children’s Brain Tumour Research (CBTR) here at The University of Nottingham. For the last three years I have spent two weeks of my annual leave cycling over 1,100 miles to raise funds for a worthy cause as part of Life Cycle and this year’s ride to the four corners of Britain – Life Cycle 4 - will be my biggest challenge yet. Our fundraising target is £500,000.
I will be riding in honour of a young man, who became a close friend of the University after being diagnosed with a brain tumour, aged just 12. Sam White responded to the news with a determination to live life to the full and to do all he could to raise awareness of the disease. Sadly, Sam died last year, aged 16.
Around the world more than 30,000 children each year are diagnosed with cancer of the brain or central nervous system: many will die and the majority of those who survive are disabled. Yet of the £500m spent each year on cancer research in the UK, less than 2% is spent on brain tumours.
There are real reasons to be optimistic however. Survival rates have increased and the average time for diagnosis has been halved to less than seven weeks. Childhood leukaemia is a great example where research has directly improved patient outcomes – more than 80% of children with leukaemia are now cured with modern treatments. Our dream is to make equivalent progress for children with brain tumours.
The University of Nottingham’s researchers are leading the way but we urgently need more funding to make the most of the scientific knowledge we are uncovering. So this summer I will do what I can to help young people like Sam and their families and I would be delighted if you could support us.
You can watch a video of Sam’s story and make a donation here.
There will also be the opportunity to take part in a sponsored cycle ride on 31st August in Nottingham.
Any support you can give to this year’s Life Cycle will help young lives affected by brain tumours.
Prof David Greenaway