We are delighted to welcome Dame Laura Kenny and Sir Jason Kenny as our first charity Patrons!
The Stratford Herald, 16th January 2023
They are the country's most succesful cycling couple with a collection of Olympic gold medals between them that would make entire countries proud. And now Dame Laura Kenny and Sir Jason Kenny are putting their passion for cycling and their profile - behind the Alderminster based charity Cyclists Fighting Cancer.
It's quite a coup for the charity founded by Mike Grisenthwaite after his own five-year battle with blood cancer. The charity's aim is to help children who are fighting the disease with exercise, which has been shown to be an effective way of improving physical and mental wellness for people surviving cancer.
"They are amazing people" Mike told the Herald. "Their whole lives have been centred around cycling. Just having them on board is great."
Between them Dame Laura and Sir Jason have 12 Olympic gold medals. But away from the success on two wheels they are parents who are keen to help children. Laura has already been lending her support to the charity which gives lightweight bikes, tandems and specially adapted trikes to children and young people living with cancer.
"She sent a video message to one of the teenage girls we are working with to give her some encouragement," Mike explained, "It's that sort of help that makes a big difference."
Since being set up Cyclists Fighting Cancer has given around 8,500 bikes to children with cancer. Last year it was donating 60 bikes a month. Having Laura and Jason on board will, hopefully, give the charity greater profile and allow it to generate the funds to reach even more children.
"The hopes are it will lead to more people knowing about us and raising more funds, and it will open more doors in the cycling world" said Mike. There are already plans that will help promote the charity, with one exciting project that would provide national coverage. But that's hush, hush at the moment.
Laura and Jason became patrons of the charity thanks to a few opportunistic talks between the couple and one of the charity's trustees who works at the National Cycling Centre in Manchester where the couple trained. The couple said,
“We’re really honoured to become patrons of Cyclists Fighting Cancer (CFC) and to support their crucial work with children and young people living with cancer throughout the UK. Cycling has been such a huge part of our lives for so long, so being involved with a charity which enables some of the most vulnerable children in our society to have their own new lightweight bike or adapted trike to help them in their rehabilitation is something that we are extremely passionate about.
Cycling is our happy place, especially as a family with our son Albie, we love spending time together outside with all the physical and mental positives this brings, so to be part of making this possible for other families going through such difficult circumstances is very important to us.”