Young woman to trek Great Wall of China for arthritis charity (From East London and West Essex Guardian Series)
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Madeleine Cameron to trek Great Wall of China for Arthritis Research UK
A YOUNG woman will trek for ten days across the Great Wall of China to raise money for research into arthritis.
Madeleine Cameron, 21, of Queen Mary's Gate, South Woodford, is taking part in the trek in February to raise money for Arthritis Research UK after her dad, Murray, 59, was diagnosed with psoriatic arthritis four years ago.
To participate in the challenge of a lifetime Miss Cameron needed to raise £3,000 for the charity.
Miss Cameron said: "Before my dad got arthritis I never really thought about it. It was a great shock for all his friends and family see him become so ill.
"His joints would swell and get inflamed before he received life-changing medication on the NHS, because it is so expensive he had to wait for a year for approval from the local health authority."
Mr Cameron, of Station Road, Epping, will now inject himself with the drug, Etarnercept, twice a week for the rest of his life.
He said: "For me personally when I thought about arthritis, I just thought it was something older people got. Then it happened to me.
"It hit me like a tonne of bricks.
"I'm so jealous of Madeleine, I wish I was doing it. That is just her, when she locks on to something she does it."
The challenge will mean Miss Cameron will trek for eight hours a day and will be staying in basic lodges with farmers.
She added: "I've got hair extensions, fake nails, fake eyelashes, so not the kind of girl who usually goes trekking.
"I think it will be life-changing and will open my eyes outside of my Essex bubble."
On Saturday she organised a charity show with singers and musicians in Chigwell School, in High Road, Chigwell, to help reach her target.
She added: "The night was so amazing. The talent was just incredible.
"It was the female auction which was my main income - one girl was bought for £400."
On the night she raised £1,575 and in total has raised £2,445.
To help Miss Cameron reach her target visit justgiving.co.uk/MadeleineCameron.
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