Prior to our South Yorkshire derby with Sheffield Wednesday, a group of supporters from both teams will be walking from Oakwell to Hillsborough to raise money for Weston Park Cancer Charity.
Amongst those taking part in the walk are a couple of people who have been impacted by cancer, including Steven, who had cancer in 2018, and Gail, who is walking in memory of her mum Jean.
It is a poignant date for Gail, as Jean would have been celebrating her 85th birthday on Saturday.
This is the fifth walk organised by Carl Mellor, with further fundraising initiatives planned later in the season – potentially fixtures against Lincoln City or Burton Albion.
They will depart Barnsley at 8:15am to begin the 11 and a half mile walk to Owlerton.
“Everyone knows someone who has personally had a cancer diagnosis; it affects one in two of us,” said Carl. “Our family was touched back in 2018 when my stepdad, Steven, was suddenly diagnosed with a rare form of cancer caused by the HPV virus in his throat and neck.
“Before treatment, he had to have a number of operations plus a Peg feed fitted, which would be his main source of intake for the next 12 months. His daily treatment of radiotherapy, along with three full days of chemotherapy, then commenced at Weston Park Hospital.
“It was a long journey – particularly the last months – where he remained an inpatient.
“Whilst we knew about the hospital and the amazing work that the consultants, nurses and staff do, we knew very little of Weston Park Cancer Charity. Throughout his treatment, they provided Steven and the family with advice – what to expect and how to manage – therapy treatments and endless emotional support.
“Even now, almost four years post-treatment, that support continues – they are like a new family that has developed off the back of the dreadful diagnosis.”
To date with challenges and events that Carl has done personally or arranged for groups, almost £20,000 has been raised for this truly magnificent cause. The aim is to pass this total after this walk and continue to raise money for Weston Park Cancer Charity.
All of the walkers will be wearing Weston Park t-shirts whilst en route, so if you see them on the A61, give them a beep or drop some change in the collection buckets.
Alternatively, you can donate at their JustGiving page below.