Ability Bow therapy gym close to London marathon fundraising target

Staff and volunteers battling to keep their therapy gymnasium going in east London have raised �28,000 so far from this year’s London Marathon.

Another �10,000 is expected to come in from last month’s event in which 31 volunteers ran for the Ability Bow gym.

The cash is going towards running its Specialist Referral service at the gym in St Paul’s Church near Victoria Park, which takes patients from clinics and hospitals across east London who are recovering from accidents and debilitating illnesses such as stroke and heart attack.

One of their marathon runners, Rebecca Clancy, said: “I am always blown away by the kindness of strangers on the day, people you’ve never met before cheering you on.

“The crowds are what keep me doing it year after year—and the medal at the end!”

The referral therapy service, which needs �250,000 a year to keep going, came close to folding at Christmas 2007 when funds ran out, but was saved by an 11th-hour recuse package by Tower Hamlets Council.

It gets annual grants from local authorities and statutory health services, but still has to raise most of its funding. The next fundraiser is its annual fun-run at Victoria Park on November 3, hoping to raise �5,000.

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It has started an appeal for volunteers to take part to call in at Ability Bow, at St Paul’s Church in St Stephen’s Road, Bow, phone 020-8980 7778 or email: info@abilitybow.co.uk