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Phil Woods

Virgin London Marathon 2019

Challenge complete

Fundraising for this challenge has ended so we're no longer accepting donations. Thanks to everyone who supported this challenge.

Total raised so far £0.00

Target £0.00

Total plus Gift Aid: £0.00

Raised offline: £0.00

My story

[p] Our Marathon man![/p][p] Now on his 14th (yes, you read that right!) London Marathon, Phil Woods explains why he runs and what he’s gained personally while raising £32,000 for families living with hemiplegia[/p][p] 2019 will mark my 14th consecutive year of raising funds for HemiHelp, and indeed my first for Contact. This journey began after our son George was diagnosed with right sided hemiplegia at 2.5 years old. As first time parents of twin boys, Jake & George, we didn’t know where to turn, but luckily, we were handed a HemiHelp leaflet by George’s consultant.[/p][p] Our contact with HemiHelp commenced soon after and we received a good deal of support throughout George’s education, including two school visits by HemiHelp which were instrumental in giving teachers an understanding of George’s hemiplegia and aids to support him.[/p][p] I decided to fundraise as a means of thanking HemiHelp and what better way than participating in the Flora London Marathon 2006. I was offered a place in the HemiHelp team and my fundraising began in earnest… and continues still![/p][p] Fundraising has brought me opportunities and skills I would never otherwise have gained. My first year saw me speak at a Police dinner for 130 senior officers, who donated over £1,000 – my first ever public speaking occasion and what a way to start! I would certainly never earn a living from public speaking, but this gave me confidence to spread the word on the effects of hemiplegia and the work of HemiHelp. Over the years I’ve addressed over a thousand teenagers at a school in the West Midlands and the players of Leicester City Football Club. One year, George and I were interviewed at BBC Radio Leicester on the day before the Marathon, and we’ve featured several times on local radio.[/p][p] What I have found is that with no need for a ‘hard sell’, donors appear in many different formats: from generous anonymous strangers to elderly family acquaintances who can barely spare the money. Support from local companies comes out of the blue, and the number of raffle prizes donated by friends and family has been tremendous. All because people have been willing to listen, understand the pain of a parent who can’t ‘mend their child’, and recognise the good work of HemiHelp.[/p][p] I can’t believe I have competed in the past thirteen London Marathons and there is no doubt that my support for HemiHelp, and now the wider family of Contact, will not diminish. Fundraising means I have witnessed people’s generosity and caring side in an era where there is so much criticism of the state of society. Among young people and old; family and strangers, there are many more good folk than you would ever realize.[/p][p] Finally, I have to mention the experiences of running the London Marathon which are forever engrained in my mind. Practically everybody running has their own personal story to tell – some happy and some very sad – but on the day, the support from each other and the amazing crowds is something to behold. Never have I experienced such warmth, love, support and encouragement from so many people calling out my name that is written on my vest: all complete strangers who make me feel so special for the length of 26.2 miles. I only wish I could bottle the feeling and share it with many people in the world who really need such support in their daily struggles in life.[/p][p] Thank you so much HemiHelp for everything. Phil xx[/p][p] 18[b] [/b]I www.contact.org.uk I Winter 2018[/p][p] If you’ve been inspired to fundraise for us, please contact lizzie.salter@contact.org.uk[b] [/b][/p][p] Winter 2018 I www.contact.org.uk I 19[/p][p] [/p][p] [/p]
Virgin London Marathon 2019 image 1
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Share Phil's story


May 12, 2019

Marie Eileen Sylvia Keith x

Keep going Phil!!

£40.00 plus £10.00 Gift Aid

May 12, 2019

Lou Anne Liz

Congratulations Phil

£70.00 plus £17.50 Gift Aid

May 12, 2019

Julie Yorkl

Well done, yet again Phil

£30.00 plus £7.50 Gift Aid

May 12, 2019

Friends from work

Congratulations on your last run....ever!!!

£241.76 plus £60.44 Gift Aid

Apr 28, 2019


Best of luck Phill. From Paulene/Simon & Girls

Apr 27, 2019

Mel J Jess

Go do your thing Phil! We’ll be cheering your name from back home this year but will be with you in spirit every step of the way....love from Mel, James and Jess x

£20.00 plus £5.00 Gift Aid

Apr 26, 2019

Nick Gargan

Nice temperature in store for you Phil - hope your injury behaves itself.


Apr 26, 2019


Good Luck, have fun and enjoy x

£15.00 plus £3.75 Gift Aid

Apr 26, 2019

Stewart Carter

All the best Phil. Run fast and you’ll catch some of the Arsenal match!!

£30.00 plus £7.50 Gift Aid

Apr 25, 2019

David Eardley-Wilmot

Good Luck hope you stay injury free

£50.00 plus £12.50 Gift Aid