Running to raise awareness

April 09, 2018

Shepparton ME/Chronic Fatigue Syndrome and Fibromyalgia support group assistant, Sharleen Bachelor and convener, Georgie Dodson with Assistant dog, Carina.

Shepparton chronic fatigue sufferers have joined forces and will take part in a weekly parkrun event ahead of a national awareness day next month.

The Shepparton Myalgic Encephalomyelitis/Chronic Fatigue Syndrome and Fibromyalgia support group will join the weekly Shepparton Parkrun in the run-up to next month’s National Fibromyalgia Awareness Day.

Shepparton’s Georgie Dodson knows all to well the effects chronic fatigue syndrome and fibromyalgia can have on a person’s life.

‘‘Chronic fatigue syndrome is an illness that affects a person’s nervous system and, unfortunately, fibromyalgia is likely to follow bringing down muscle stiffness and pain. Some days you just can’t make it to everyday activities,’’ Mrs Dodson said.

During the past two months, Mrs Dodson has been helping friend and fellow chronic fatigue and fibromyalgia sufferer Sharleen Bachelor participate in weekly parkruns on Saturday mornings.

‘‘I also have epilepsy and my brother roped me into parkrun because I was learning to walk again,’’ Ms Bachelor said.

Shepparton Parkrun volunteer Allan Connolly said May 12, National Fibromyalgia Awareness Day, was a Saturday this year and the run should incorporate the event.

‘‘On the day some of the runners will run around with a pillow or a blanket and pyjamas, or simply make a donation to ME/CFS Victoria,’’ Mrs Dodson said.

Ms Bachelor said it meant a lot that parkrun had gotten on board and said she would wear her giraffe onesie.

‘‘The people I’ve met through parkrun, they’re just beautiful people, they’re so welcoming and friendly and very encouraging, and they don’t know how much that means to us’’ she said.

‘‘We constantly run into people in Shepparton who don’t know about the support group — and we’re here guys,’’ she said.

The National Fibromyalgia Awareness Day run will start from 8am May 12 at the southern end of Victoria Park Lake. For more information, phone Georgie Dodson on 0421 476 701 or follow the group’s Facebook page.

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