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Norwich woman with fibromyalgia takes on fundraising coastal walk between Norfolk borders with Lincolnshire and Suffolk

PUBLISHED: 06:30 21 February 2012 | UPDATED: 16:44 21 February 2012

Rebecca Wass (centre) is pictured with James Rollingson (left) and Christon Sharpe at the Gazebo in Sheringham Park after walking a six-mile circular route from Sheringham.

Rebecca Wass (centre) is pictured with James Rollingson (left) and Christon Sharpe at the Gazebo in Sheringham Park after walking a six-mile circular route from Sheringham.

Submitted - February 2012

Walking 100 miles around the length of Norfolk's coastline is not a challenge to be taken lightly by anyone, let alone someone with a chronic condition of widespread pain and profound fatigue.

"I was diagnosed 16 years ago with fibromyalgia, which mainly ladies over 50 years old are diagnosed with."

Rebecca Wass

That is exactly what 31-year-old Rebecca Wass is planning to do though, over the course of five days at the start of April.

What makes the trek more difficult for Rebecca, who lives on Gertrude Road in north Norwich, is that she has fibromyalgia.

The medical condition, which is more common than rheumatoid arthritis, can cause aching or burning pain from head to toe for its sufferers, as well as a fatigue similar to the exhaustion of a flu-like illness.

Because of this Rebecca, a creative arts tutor for Broadland Training Services, wants to raise funds and awareness for Fibromyalgia Association UK (FAUK) by walking from the Norfolk border with Lincolnshire round to the border with Suffolk.

Rebecca explained: “I was diagnosed 16 years ago with fibromyalgia, which mainly ladies over 50 years old are diagnosed with, but I was diagnosed at 17 and have always had it.

“I was very poorly a few years ago but I am back to health now. I wants to raise funds and awareness for FAUK because they have helped me out a lot.

“They showed me where I can meet and speak to people who have it as well, so I put together a coast-to-coast walk last year but got poorly again so I couldn’t do it.”

The border-to-border walk is being held between Thursday, April 5 and Sunday, April 8 and Rebecca is looking for people to join her.

She added: “I do struggle quite a bit with walking sometimes so it will be hard but I’m doing quite a lot of training and we are going on some group walks at weekends.”

Pam Stewart, chair of FAUK, added: “Fibromyalgia Association UK applauds the efforts of people like Rebecca, who despite their pain and fatigue and numerous other symptoms that are fibromyalgia, continue to raise awareness and funds.

“It is through the dedication of people like her and her team that we can give support and lobby for better diagnosis and treatment for the tens of thousands who are often misunderstood and have to cope with their symptoms every day.”

Rebecca has a fundraising target of £2,000 and has already raised over £600. To donate, go to www.justgiving.com/teams/fibroandmyAnglias, or to join her on the walk, email wass_rebecca@hotmail.com

Are you organising a charity challenge? Contact reporter David Freezer on 01603 772418 or david.freezer@archant.co.uk

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