A woman who has raised hundreds of pounds by running the Race For Life will be taking part again after being diagnosed with breast cancer.
Paula White, of Ifield, has entered the annual women-only event in Tilgate Park for the past 10 years in the names of family and friends, raising money for Cancer Research.
This year, though, the race will have a more poignant air following her own fight with the disease.
Paula, 47, said: “I’ve had all those years of doing Race For Life and doing it for other people and I’m now reaping the benefit myself.”
Paula was diagnosed in January and received treatment from Crawley and East Surrey Hospital and is undergoing 23 sessions of radiotherapy at St Luke’s Hospital, in Guildford.
Now in recovery, she said: “It was a very difficult time but I can’t thank the hospital enough.”
Taking part in Race For Life with Paula will be a 26-strong team of family and friends, all wearing T-shirts emblazoned with the slogan ‘Simply the breast!’. Among them will be her niece Jo Harrison – who designed the shorts – and mother, Genevieve.
The 85-year-old has undergone her own fight with bowel cancer and will be one of the oldest women to take part.
The team will walk the 5k route with her so they all cross the finishing line together.
Paula, who works for West Sussex Library Services, said: “She has never done this before. She wanted to support me and join in the fun.
“She’s bought her very first pair of trainers – they are bright pink!”
Waiting for the team to finish will be her husband, Dave, and sons Ben, 18, and Alfie, 12.
Paula said she had been overwhelmed by the level of support shown for her fundraising efforts.
She added: “Every person who has joined the team or made a donation if they can’t join in, has done it to support me – they are my family, friends and amazing work colleagues. I have been totally overwhelmed by everyone’s support.”
The team has raised £790 so far via the Just Giving website www.justgiving.com/simply-the-breast277