— Millions Missing Can (@MillionMissCan) March 6, 2017
Mike Harley, a very personable young man from Bristol England, has a best friend, Ian, who has been ill with Myalgic Encephalomyelitis for more than a decade.
Frustrated at seeing CBT and GET pushed on those suffering with a biomedical condition and wanting to do something substantial to help his friend, Mike decided to bring attention to, and raise funds for, biomedical research into ME. He then decided to do that by running in marathons.
Mike’s ambitious plan is to run a marathon in every country in the EU (European Union). That makes 28 in total, and so far he’s right on target.
Starting his venture in May 2015, Mike has run in an incredible nine races in nine different countries! He’s run in the UK, Czech Republic, Finland, Ireland, Greece, Sweden, Poland, Belgium and France. He plans on running in five more each year, for the next three years, finishing up in 2020.
Next marathon up is number 10 in Barcelona, Spain, this coming weekend on Sunday March 12th, 2017. He’s hoping to meet up with a group of patients as well as some ME researchers.
Wherever Mike runs, he convenes with international ME associations, support groups, patients and press/media to promote the need and put pressure on governments to fund biomedical research projects. It’s his intention and mission to help highlight the struggle that ME patients live with, in each country that he visits.
He’s been on BBC Radio and featured on running websites. He’s also had previous press coverage in France, Czech Republic and Belgium.
Mike’s goal is to raise £26.2K ($42,000 Canadian approx.) So far he’s raised a whopping £5892.90 ($9,600)! All funds are going towards Invest in ME’s Rituximab Trial and the creation of their exciting new ME Centre of Excellence.
The ME community is well acquainted with the outstanding work that Invest in ME has done over the past 12 years of so. We’re all looking forward to their next conference coming up soon, where the ‘best of the best’ and the ‘latest and greatest’ is always featured on their agendas!
In our communication with Mike, he writes:
“I pay for all of my expenses (hotels, flights, race fees and kit) as I don’t want to spend a penny of patient’s donations on this. If I did, it would delay their access to a cure or treatments. I’m trying to secure corporate sponsorship to keep the challenge going as each race costs close to £700. If anyone within a business might be interested in helping from this perspective, which would be fantastic.
I’m not a natural runner. I’m 5ft 6 and not naturally athletic, so I find the running tough, but the support I’ve had over the first 2 years of the challenge has been genuinely life-changing for me. I now consider myself an advocate for the ME community and actively try to recruit others to complete sponsored events to fund ME research.”
What an inspiration this young man is – giving hope to millions.
With much thanks from the international ME community and your friends here at MillionsMissing Canada.
Go Mike! ♥
Please consider donating to Mike’s page. For those with ME, a donation to Mike and IiME is an investment in the future of us all!
Donation Page: www.justgiving.com/mikeseumarathons
Donate by Texting: IIME82 and £3 to 70070
Facebook Page: www.facebook.com/mikeseumarathons
Mike’s EU Marathons for Invest in ME Research