herald

Sunday 17 December 2017

Georgina's team walking proud

Georgina Sweetnam managed to combine two of her great loves -- walking in the great outdoors and raising funds for her favourite charity -- when she joined up with the MS Ireland walking group in Dublin.

"MS was one of the first charities to get involved in charity walks; they've been at it for 21 years," says Georgina.

"I was looking to do a charity walk and found the MS walks through the internet. Because my father was diagnosed with MS 12 years ago, it was a good match."

Walking is very much part of her life. "I would go out on a long walk of four to five hours every weekend, which keeps me fairly fit. MS has a walking group that meets once a month in places like Glendalough and Glenmalure, and I'm also a member of another walking group."

During the week, she often takes a break from her job with the DLR County Enterprise Board by walking to Dun Laoghaire. "It gives you a break from the desk and clears the head," she says.

For the MS international walks, everything is done by the organisation itself to ensure that costs are kept to a minimum and that as much as possible of the money goes into the valuable services provided by MS Ireland.

"We have about 55 on most of the walks, many of them living with MS, such as my father. MS takes many different forms and many people are able to live normal, active lives. A lot of the money raised goes into research," she says.



Fortunately

Her big fund-raising effort for MS Ireland every year is the Flora Women's Mini Marathon. "I've won it four times and raised €1,200 last year. I usually start out with the intention of walking but end up jogging to get past the large groups."

She has finished in around 80 minutes but was a bit slower last year because of the weather. "It was very hot, particularly before the start, but fortunately, the organisers were giving out water," Georgina says. "MS Ireland was also handing out water outside their offices on Nothumberland Road, which is part of the route."

p Want to join the MS team? Contact Natasha at 01-6781600 or check out www.ms-society.ie

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