Supporter Emma Green was diagnosed with Parkinson’s in May 2018. This August, she completed a fantastic, three-day rowing challenge following the route of the Thames to raise awareness and funds for The Cure Parkinson’s Trust’s (CPT) research into a cure for Parkinson’s.

What started as an idea between three friends turned into a whole team adventure; a total of nine rowers (eight plus a cox) took on this huge challenge together. Setting off from Abingdon, a historic market town in Oxfordshire, Emma and the team rowed down the Thames passing through Henley-on-Thames, Windsor, Shepperton and more, all the way to Kingston, Southwest London. In total, they covered around 150km in just three days! Even for the most seasoned of rowers this journey is a challenge of endurance and is no easy feat.

Emma began rowing indoors just one year ago, and this summer completed a ‘Learn to Row’ course at Marlow rowing club. It was her diagnosis of Parkinson’s that inspired her to keep fit. Emma said:

“In May 2018, I finally went to see the doctor. I'd been struggling with using my right hand for quite a while and thought I'd done too much yoga! The doctor told me I had Parkinson's. First, I cried. Then I decided that I'd be the healthiest person ever! Exercise is the best treatment for Parkinson’s so I tried out the indoor rowing machine when I was on holiday. It was fun. Then I decided to learn how to row on the river. That's even more fun! Although a little difficult with one hand that doesn't do what I want!”

Emma and the team completed this incredible challenge and while it was extremely hard work, Emma found this new experience hugely rewarding and is so pleased to have raised almost £2,000 for CPT. Emma said:

“It’s a cliche to say that you have to go out of your comfort zone to learn new things, but that’s what happened. I went way out of it to find a magical and calm place where I could find some peace. Life gives us challenges so let’s face them head on and smile!”

CPT would like to say a huge thank you and congratulations to Emma and team for their amazing fundraising efforts and support taking on this enormous challenge. If you'd like to read more of Emma's story or you would like to support her fundraising please visit her fundraising page

If you feel inspired by Emma and would like to take on a challenge in support of CPT please contact Julia to discuss your ideas and find out how we can support you.