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Charity zumbathon to be held in memory of friend

PUBLISHED: 08:08 12 February 2013 | UPDATED: 08:08 12 February 2013

Ruth Thurston and her friend and zumba instructor, Rachel Evans, are holding a charity zumbathon to raise money for ovarian cancer
Photo by Simon Finlay

Ruth Thurston and her friend and zumba instructor, Rachel Evans, are holding a charity zumbathon to raise money for ovarian cancer Photo by Simon Finlay

Archant Norfolk

Two friends are organising a five-hour zumba party to raise money and awareness of a cancer which claimed the life of their friend.

Ruth Thurston and Rachel Evans are holding a five-hour zumba party to raise money for Target Ovarian Cancer in memory of their friend, Karen Newstead, who died aged 53 in April 2010.

Grandmother-of-one Karen, who lived in Ingham, worked as a cognitive behavioural therapist.

Mrs Thurston said: “She died five months after she stood up and gave a talk at one of our Think Pink events.

“She had secondary cancer, it was really sad. Karen said it was important to catch ovarian cancer early.”

Mrs Thurston, 48, is no stranger to throwing fundrasiers to raise money for cancer charities.

For the past 11 years, she had organised charity events with Think Pink, a company she helped to form with events planner, Sarah Softley.

The hair and beauty therapist, who lives in Quidenham, said: “Karen was always willing to share her story as she was passionate about raising awareness of the symptoms of ovarian cancer. She had always put her stomach problems down to stress.

“The statistics are shocking. We have one of the lowest survival rates in Europe for ovarian cancer with only 3pc of UK women very confident of spotting a symptom such as swelling, bloating and feeling full.”

About 7,000 women are diagnosed with ovarian cancer each year and 29pc are diagnosed after a visit to A&E.

Mrs Thurston is organising the event with her friend, Rachel Evans from Cringleford, who is a zumba instructor.

The five-hour party will take place on Saturday, March 9 from 10am to 3pm at The Atrium in City Academy and the pair are hoping about 100 people will attend. Imagine Spa will be offering treatments and there will also be a cafe.

Mrs Evans said: “I know it sounds like a long hard day but we will see people dip in and out of the zumbathon as they wish, working at their own level.

“About 99pc of my students are women age between 13-70 and thought this would be an ideal way to not only collect money for a worthwhile cause but also spread the information packs supplied by Target Ovarian about how to spot early symptoms of the disease to all of the ladies attending the event.”

Tickets cost £10 in advance or £12 on the door and can be bought from Ruth on strutht@tiscali.co.uk or 07979 504 667 or Rachel on rachel@zumba-norwich.co.uk or 07789 748 457.

Are you organising a charity event? Contact Lucy Wright on 01603 772439 or email lucy.wright@archant.co.uk

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