TEAM PINK RIBBON
39 Salop Road Welshpool Powys SY21 7EA
Tel 01938 558047 Mobile 07811 331501
We are Allan Owen of Welshpool, Mid Wales, and Roger Gale of Naucelle, France and we have entered the AZAB Yacht Race starting in Falmouth on 2nd June 2007; not because we need the exercise but because we want to do something different to gain attention for our charities! We sailed together frequently before Roger moved to France in 2005. Roger is a qualified offshore skipper and senior instructor and has many sea miles and years of experience under his belt, whilst Allan is a comparative novice who has only been sailing since 2000. The race is tough and covers a total distance of approximately 2400 nautical miles, taking us through the Western Approaches and across the Bay of Biscay to the Azores and back. We will be racing our Jeanneau 35, which we sail out of Milford Haven, Pembrokeshire. We are entering the race in the hope of winning a prize, but primarily to help raise awareness of breast cancer issues and make lots of money for Breakthrough Breast Cancer, the Lingen Davies Cancer Relief Fund and a local support group, Stepping Stones. 70% of the sum raised will be given to Breakthrough Breast Cancer, 25% to the Lingen Davies Cancer Relief Fund and 5% to Stepping Stones.
The inspiration behind the decision to raise money for these charities is Allan’s wife, Mary, her close friend Shirley Scott and other ladies we have known over the years who have had breast cancer. Shirley was diagnosed with breast cancer in 2003. She fought her illness with determination and never complained about her situation or lost her infectious sense of humour, but sadly passed away on 4th November 2005. Mary first had breast cancer in 2000 at the age of 40 and again in February 2005. The diagnosis and the gruelling treatment she has received have been faced by her with courage and an upbeat attitude.
In the UK, almost 41000 women are diagnosed with breast cancer each year and almost 1000 women die from the disease each month. Think about it for a moment - 1000 women each month : that is roughly 33 women a day, in the UK alone. In the UK around 300 men are diagnosed with breast cancer each year; whilst dealing with a diagnosis of breast cancer, men carry the added worry of having what is regarded as a woman’s disease because it is so rare in men.
Breakthrough Breast Cancer will be receiving 70% of the money raised by us. Breakthrough is a national charity committed to fighting breast cancer through research (it has established the UK’s first dedicated breast cancer research centre in partnership with The Institute of Cancer Research). Breakthrough also campaigns to keep breast cancer at the top of public and political agendas, promoting education and awareness of the issue among the public, policy makers, health professionals and the media. The charity needs to raise at least £10 million a year to fund its pioneering research and education programme, and realise its vision of a future free from the fear of breast cancer. Their website is www.breakthrough.org.uk
The Lingen Davies Cancer Relief Fund will be receiving 25% of the money raised by us. The Fund is dedicated to improving cancer facilities for the people of Shropshire and Mid Wales. A Chemotherapy Day Centre opened at The Royal Shrewsbury Hospital in 2000, paid for by local fundraisers, and Mary was one of the first patients to be treated there. She and Shirley were both treated there more recently and Mary was a volunteer on the unit until her latest diagnosis. The Centre was built to provide a comfortable and suitable environment for patients to receive their Chemotherapy treatment and is now being stretched to its limit as more and more people come through the doors, due to advances in medicine and earlier diagnoses. In 2004 the Fund launched a major appeal to raise £3.5 million to build a new Cancer Centre at The Royal Shrewsbury Hospital to provide a new clinic for the Haematology Department, new wards for the Head & Neck Unit and to extend the existing Chemotherapy Day Unit. Their website is
Stepping Stones will receive 5% of the money raised by us. This is a breast cancer support group run by MacMillan Nurses and based in Newtown, Powys and which helps ladies over a huge area that stretches from the Shropshire borders over to the Welsh coast. Mary and Shirley were members from the time it formed. The group meets once a month and funds itself through events organised by the members. As well as providing support and information the girls have fun days out and invite different people in to give talks and demonstrations. 2006 included a reiki evening, a body shop party, a fundraising Rock and Roll night and dinner out in nice restaurants!
We are fortunate to have on board numerous blue chip sponsors from the marine industry and beyond and they are listed on a page of our website, with links to their own websites. Amongst our confirmed sponsors are McMurdo, Energy Batteries, C-Map, Selden, Kemp Sails, Crew Clothing, BP, Harken, Marlec, Barrus, Admiralty Leisure, English Braids, Pains Wessex, Shoreline Refrigeration Services and Technocover to name but a few.
We hope you will help us to raise lots of money. Breast cancer touches so many people’s lives and almost every one of us is affected by it in some way. You will find a lot more information about us, the race and the chosen charities on our website. Please feel free to contact us by phone, post or e-mail as above. We can be sponsored by cheque made out to “teampinkribbon” or via the website.
Thanks so much for your interest and taking the time to read this.
Allan Owen and Roger Gale