Sisters To Run With Mum After Breast Cancer Battle

Great Comeback 2

Entries for the Simplyhealth Junior and Mini Great Manchester Run are now open. Enter at: Greatrun.org/Manchester

Two schoolgirls will take on a running challenge with their mum to raise awareness after she was diagnosed with breast cancer.

Leah Mullany, 6, and her four-year-old sister Sophie, decided to take on a fundraising challenge when their Mum Michelle found out she had breast cancer last December.

The family, from Trafford in Greater Manchester, were left shocked by the diagnosis, as 39-year-old Michelle underwent a mastectomy, as well as gruelling rounds of chemotherapy and radiotherapy.

Michelle found herself in the situation where she had to explain to her young girls that their mum was poorly and was undergoing treatment where she would lose her hair.

Thankfully, after 10 rounds of chemotherapy and 15 radiotherapy sessions, Michelle made a full recovery.

She wanted the family to take on something active together and will join Leah and Sophie at the Simplyhealth Junior and Mini Great Manchester Run on Sunday 28 May.

The family will run the event for charity, supporting The Christie, where Michelle was a patient, and also the Look Good Feel Better charity that helps women regain their confidence while they are battling cancer.

Michelle said: “When your children are so young, it's very hard to begin to think about how you will tell them that you have cancer. “When I was first given the news, I was nervous about telling the kids but I was given a book called Mummy's Lump that was full of pictures and very helpful in giving them an understanding.

“We always made sure that Leah and Sophie knew everything what was going on and were always involved and we encouraged them to ask questions.

“After my treatment and because of the help we had received from charities like Look Good Feel Better, Leah mentioned to me that she wanted to do something to help them.”

Leah and Sophie will join over 2,000 kids for the Simplyhealth Junior and Mini Great Manchester Run across both a 1.5k and 2.3k course.

Manchester's biggest children's running event will feature thousands of children running for fun, fitness and fundraising.

The event is part of a packed weekend of sport in the city, with 30,000 people taking to the streets of Manchester for the Simplyhealth Great Manchester Run and brand new Half Marathon distance on Sunday 28 May.

The kids events are also perfect for parents who wish to take part in the event before tackling the 10k distance, with the Simplyhealth Junior and Mini Great Manchester Run starting and finishing prior to the 10k.

The Mullany family, who will all be running together, will be supporting Look Good Feel Better, a local charity that works with cancer sufferers to keep their confidence and self esteem high during treatment.

Michelle said: “When I was going through the treatment, I ended up not wearing a wig and this was something I was really keen on getting the children used to.

“I felt confident and enjoyed doing my own makeup, but I know this is not always the case with every woman and losing your hair and things like eyebrows and eyelashes can really affect how you feel about your body image.

“There were times when I looked in the mirror and didn't recognise myself.

“Look Good Feel Better gives people free services to help people struggling with the visible effects of cancer, which are sometimes as bad as the emotional strain.

“We were looking for something active and fun to do together and so the Simplyhealth Junior and Mini Manchester Run was the perfect option.

“We have been going for walks together and doing little runs in between. The girls are really excited as it's an easy way for us to all have fun as a family.”

To support Leah and Sophie, visit their fundraising page.

Entries for the Simplyhealth Junior and Mini Great Manchester Run are now open. Enter at: Greatrun.org/Manchester