Ladies put best foot forward for fundraiser

BRON Dowling and Jackie Christopherson are so committed to  raising money for people living with multiple sclerosis (MS) they will walk 303 kilometres later this year.

The Molong women, along with friends from Sydney, aim to raise $300,000 for MS research in Australia and the United Kingdom. 

Their fundraising goal is $150,000 in Australia and $150,000 in England.

In her 30 years of working in the health industry Bron Dowling says she  has witnessed how illness can impact people’s lives.

She said the idea for the fundraiser  came from an MS charity walk from Mudgee to Sydney she completed in 2010.

“It didn’t matter to me that I was walking for multiple sclerosis or any other charity, some friends were doing it so I thought ‘this could be fun’,” she said.

During that walk she shared the bitumen with Multiple Sclerosis Research Australia chairman Jeremy Wright.

“Along the way he amazed me with tales of research being done in Australia and all over the world,” she said.

“The research is costly and slow, but most importantly, closing in on the mystery of MS, bit by bit.”

She also met MS sufferer Deb. As the day warmed up Deb’s symptoms affected her eyesight so much that she could not see where she was going.

“We walked in formation, one behind and one in front of Deb for the rest of the walk, calling out to her if there was a tree root, uneven surface, steps, ramps and approaching people,” Ms Dowling said.

“Deb refused to give up. I have never seen such courage.”

During that walk her group raised $150,000.

Bron and Jackie will hold the first of several fundraisers on Saturday, March 29, with Music in the Vineyard at Mortimers of Orange.

Live entertainment by Into the Blue Jazz Quartet, November Shorn and Lynda Manwaring will be offered, as well as a barbecue and drinks, for $20 per person.

Ms Dowling was quick to say all funds raised in Australia would stay in the country, while donations made during their trip to England for the Coast to Coast MS Walk in September would stay in the UK.

“One hundred per cent of donations raised here will stay here,” she said.

People wishing to attend Music in the Vineyard can RSVP by contacting Bron Dowling on 0428 661 628 or email gumblestate@gmail.com, or Jackie Christopherson on 6366 8543 or  email. ridgeview02@hotmail.com.

nadine.morton@fairfaxmedia.com.au

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