Purple Wave Fundraising Team 2023

This year, dozens of alumni, students, and staff here at The University of Manchester will be putting on their training shoes and taking part in the Purple Wave, to support Manchester’s cancer research.  

We all know someone whose life has been changed by cancer. That’s why researchers in Manchester are working hard to improve how cancer is treated and help more patients with cancer get back to normal life.  

A brand-new cancer centre will be opening soon. Designed to speed up research progress, it’ll be a world-class centre bringing new hope to people with cancer. Amazing research will take place inside the new building, and these wonderful Purple Wave fundraisers will be a part of that.  

Alex McCall

I’m running this race in honour of my late grandmother-in-law, Ulla Gray. This is her and I together at a family wedding back in 2018.

In 2021 my family found out that Ulla had cancer for the second time – a fear she’d lived with ever since her first cancer diagnosis many years before. Unfortunately, the prognosis wasn’t good. Her cancer had spread, and they couldn’t even identify the source. We were all devastated, and it felt like a cruel joke. Sadly, less than a year after her diagnosis she passed away.

Cancer is such a nasty, cruel disease and I am running in the hope that a cure might be found to prevent any more families losing the ones they love too soon.

This run is personal to me. The Purple Wave takes place on the 21st of May – almost a year to the day from when she passed. It’s an important way to celebrate her life.

I know that if Ulla was here today, she would not only be sponsoring me but sharing my fundraising page with all her friends. It’s so rewarding to see people sponsoring me and I’m thrilled to have already surpassed my initial fundraising target of £100. I know that Ulla would be proud that her life and legacy is helping to support such an important cause.

Alex is a Philanthropy Manager at The University of Manchester. She’ll be taking part in the Purple Wave 10k to support Manchester’s cancer research in memory of her late grandmother-in-law, Ulla Gray. You can see how her fundraising is going here: https://www.justgiving.com/fundraising/alex-mccall2.

Luke Stamp

I will be running the half marathon in The University of Manchester’s Purple Wave in memory of my two late grandfathers – Eddie and Keith. Both were taken too soon by cancer – something that sadly happens to many of us around the world.

I have heard so much about my grandfather, Eddie, but I never had the pleasure of meeting him. He died of cancer shortly before I was born. He was loved dearly by everyone in my family, and I hear the best of him from them – through stories and photographs.

My grandfather Keith, however, I did know well. We shared a great love for Manchester United. He passed the red genes on to my dad who then passed them on to me! When the Purple Wave passes Old Trafford – The Theatre of Dreams – I know that my memories of him will help me run that little bit faster.

I hope that my fundraising in the Purple Wave makes both of my grandfathers proud. And I hope that by supporting Manchester’s cancer research, more people get more time with the people that they love.

Manchester’s cancer research is amazing and that’s why I’m running to support it. I really appreciate everybody who has donated to help me support such a great cause.

Luke is an undergraduate student in the School of Social Sciences at The University of Manchester. He’ll be taking part in the Purple Wave half marathon to support Manchester’s cancer research in memory of his late grandfathers, Eddie and Keith. You can see how his fundraising is going here: https://www.justgiving.com/fundraising/luke-stamp11.

Jemma Gurr

This year I’ll be taking part in the Purple Wave 10K to support cancer research at The University of Manchester.

Anyone who knows me will know I’m not a runner. I spent most of my secondary school PE lessons bunking off in the cloakroom to avoid the dreaded 1,500 meters. And I’ve always felt slightly distrustful when people tell me they actually enjoy going for a run!

But – having been lucky enough to be involved in Manchester’s cancer research over the past few years through my work – I’ve seen what a brilliant cause it is. Which is why I’m taking on my first ever 10K, to raise vital funds to help drive this research forward.

Since this will be my longest ever run, it feels quite daunting. I’ve been there at the cheer-point during previous Purple Waves though, so I know how brilliant the atmosphere will be on the day, and I’m sure that will help me keep going.

I’m taking part with a group of my colleagues in the ‘DDAR does Purple Wave 2023’ team. Collectively we’ve already raised over £750, and we’ve found it to be a great team-building activity. I’d say – if you’re thinking of taking part then try to rope in some colleagues too. It’s been loads of fun and we’ve all helped keep each other motivated.

Jemma is Head of Regular Giving at The University of Manchester. She’ll be taking part in the Purple Wave 10K to support Manchester’s cancer research. You can see how her fundraising is going here: https://www.justgiving.com/fundraising/jemma-gurr3.

Cancer will affect one in two of us but with your help, Manchester can create a happier, healthier future for all. Will you help support Manchester’s cancer research by joining the Purple Wave fundraising team today?

More information:

Register to take part in this year’s Purple Wave: https://www.sport.manchester.ac.uk/sport-and-activity/purplewave/

Join the Purple Wave fundraising team: https://www.justgiving.com/campaign/purplewave23

Find out how the University is re-writing cancer: www.manchester.ac.uk/cancerpuzzle

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