The following story has just been posted on Manchester Metropolitan University Intranet:
A group of lecturers are taking part in the world’s biggest annual Swimathon to raise money for cancer charities.
The team of digital marketing lecturers in the Faculty of Business and Law are completing the challenge in support for their colleague Dr Bex Lewis, Senior Lecturer in Digital Marketing, who was diagnosed with breast cancer in 2017.
The Swimathon is a national challenge that raises money for Marie Curie – a charity that provides care and support for people living with any terminal illness – and Cancer Research UK – a charity looking for a cure.
The challenge will see over 21,000 swimmers across 600 pools across the UK swim as far as they can on the weekend of 29-31 March.
“My work colleagues and I are doing this because cancer is horrific, and I want a cure!
“We joined the challenge when I thought my ‘cancer treadmill’ was flattening out. Unfortunately, my cancer has metastasised into my spine (thankfully small), so I’m about to enter more treatment.
“I’ve been using swimming to get myself back to fitness but due to treatments, swimming will have to stop soon, so I’ve already completed my 1.5k!
“My team at Manchester Met are amazing and have been so supportive throughout this whole process.”
The team of eight have set themselves a goal to swim at least 10k across the weekend.
“I’m doing this to support Bex and the horrendous experience she’s been through since her cancer diagnosis – also for all other cancer sufferers out there and their families and friends.
“I don’t include swimming in any training I do, so doing about 40-60 lengths will be a challenge. We’re a really supportive group of colleagues within a wider team and I was proud to be asked to help in this way.
“Please help us by spreading the word, sponsoring or just virtually cheering us along on social media – it all helps.”
To donate to the team and to keep up with their progress, please visit their Just Giving page.
Dr Bex Lewis is passionate about helping people engage with the digital world in a positive way, where she has more than 20 years’ experience. She is Senior Lecturer in Digital Marketing at Manchester Metropolitan University and Visiting Research Fellow at St John’s College, Durham University, with a particular interest in digital culture, persuasion and attitudinal change, especially how this affects the third sector, including faith organisations, and, after her breast cancer diagnosis in 2017, has started to research social media and cancer. Trained as a mass communications historian, she has written the original history of the poster Keep Calm and Carry On: The Truth Behind the Poster (Imperial War Museum, 2017), drawing upon her PhD research. She is Director of social media consultancy Digital Fingerprint, and author of Raising Children in a Digital Age: Enjoying the Best, Avoiding the Worst (Lion Hudson, 2014) as well as a number of book chapters, and regularly judges digital awards. She has a strong media presence, with her expertise featured in a wide range of publications and programmes, including national, international and specialist TV, radio and press, and can be found all over social media, typically as @drbexl.