Simon Thomas begins 30-day cancer charity challenge
As a President of blood cancer research charity Bloodwise, Norfolk-born Simon Thomas has launched the Gemma Thomas Fund in memory of his wife and during September will be undertaking an ambitious 30-day challenge.
The Christian former Sky Sports and Blue Peter presenter lost Gemma to acute myeloid leukaemia (AML) suddenly in November 2017. Now the Gemma Thomas Fund will invest money into research on AML to prevent other families suffering such devastating loss. Survival rates for this aggressive type of blood cancer are shockingly low, with just 15% of people surviving for five years or more.
Simon became a President of Bloodwise in 2018 and will take part in an ambitious, 30-day mystery challenge in September to raise awareness and funds as part of Blood Cancer Awareness Month.
Simon said: “From the silly to the sublime, the risky to the ridiculous, every day I’ll find out exactly what my challenge is.
Apart from the Thames Bridges Trek on September 7, I have absolutely no idea what’s in store… I’ve been told to expect the unexpected, and that there may be a few special challenges with my old pals from Blue Peter, but I’ll just have to wait and see…
“I’m not going to lie, I’m nervous and excited as to how it’s going to turn out, so any words of support you can give me on Instagram and Twitter will be very much appreciated. But more importantly, any donation you can make, big or small, will make an incredible difference for people with blood cancer.
“In 2017, my lovely wife Gemma was rushed to hospital. She’d been back and forth to the GP for about six days but told to go home and rest every time. And four days later, she died of acute myeloid leukaemia (AML), an aggressive form of blood cancer.
“Our family was torn apart. I lost my wife. Ethan lost his mum. We’ll never get Gemma back. But in the months after her death, I formed the Gemma Thomas Fund with Bloodwise. It will invest money into research on blood cancers such as AML to prevent other families suffering such devastating loss.
“If me taking on a few challenges can raise awareness and help make sure other families don’t have to go through the same thing we did, then it will be worth a little temporary embarrassment.
“So please, give generously, and help get us closer to the day we’ve finally beaten blood cancer.
You can sponsor Simon at: www.justgiving.com/fundraising/simon-thomas41
Find out more about Bloodwise here.
Pictured above are Simon, Gemma and Ethan Thomas. Picture courtesy of Simon Thomas.
Do you appreciate our service and stories?
The Network Norwich & Norfolk website has been published for over 13 years now and we have an established team of professional journalists covering the activities, organisations and churches which make up the county’s Christian community. Our whole purpose is to support that community by daily providing accurate, unbiased stories and features.
To pay for that service, we rely on our partner organisations, advertisers and readers to, in turn, support us financially. We want to keep the website free for everyone to access and continue to be able to pay for writers to produce the content you can enjoy every day.
We would like to ask you to consider supporting our work and suggest you might want to make a small regular donation of just £1 a week and become one of our 100 Friends, or a larger one-off or annual amount.
Because we are part of a registered charity we can reclaim Gift Aid on your donations if you are a tax-payer.