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120 Orkney council employees to take part in challenge for Cancer Research

orkney council challenge
Lorraine Stout from Orkney is personally invested in the challenge after suffering from throat cancer. Picture supplied by Lorraine Stout.

120 Orkney Islands Council (OIC) employees are taking part in a 229-mile challenge, navigating all major roads across Orkney for a cancer charity.

Individuals and teams will participate by walking, running, cycling, swimming, skateboarding or horse-riding for six weeks beginning on Monday, June 27.

Employees are aiming to raise £5,000 for Cancer Research, as proposed by OIC staff member, Inga Antonio and press officer Lorraine Stout.

Mrs Stout was diagnosed with throat cancer in 2018.

She had to receive treatment to blast the tumour and cancer cells and had to survive on high-calorie prescription milkshakes.

Lorraine Stout, along with Inga Antonio, have organised the Council Cancer Challenge. Picture by Lorraine Stout.

Mrs Stout said: “I was 45, when I was diagnosed in 2018 with aggressive throat cancer – the largest tumour my Aberdeen-based oncologist had ever dealt with.

“Having young children, was not just terrifying for me but all the family – my biggest fear was leaving them.

“I am now three-and-a-half years in remission and get regular check-ups.

“The treatment came with life-changing side effects – I will never swallow normally again – so I rely on high-calorie prescription milkshakes, my speech and hearing have been affected, but I am here still, and that is the important thing.”

‘Health and wellbeing is an essential ingredient for a better workplace.’

Several local businesses like the Merkister Hotel, Iain Harcus of the Aalskere, and Steven Cooper at Aurora Jewellery has all made donations.

Ms Antonio said: “When one of the most important people in my life was diagnosed with cancer, I knew I wanted to raise money for Cancer Research to help others.

“It went from a solo challenge and then grew into the idea of getting the whole OIC involved and also the chance for employees to bond again after Covid while getting active and having some fun.”

Council Cancer Challenge. Picture supplied by Lorraine Stout.

Mrs Stout added: “Health and wellbeing is an essential ingredient for a better workplace. So, part of this drive is to get folk moving again – myself included.

“There are many staff members who have linked up to do the challenge in teams which is great as that’s partly what this is all about – bringing folk back together and doing something that has a purpose and it will make you feel good, knowing you are going to help others.”

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