Iona Murray, daughter of Viscount and Viscountess Stormont, is on target to raise £10,000 for her chosen charity Narcolepsy UK when she takes on the challenge of running the Edinburgh Marathon on 27th May.
Iona (20), who is currently in her first year studying History of Art at the University of Edinburgh, is running the marathon to raise awareness of Narcolepsy, a lifelong sleep condition which affects her brother William.
In the UK 25,000 people are affected by Narcolepsy, almost the same figure as those affected by Type 2 Diabetes and more than those affected by Parkinson’s and Huntingdon's Disease. It has been estimated that 80% of those suffering from Narcolepsy in the UK are untreated.
Currently there is no specific cure for narcolepsy and some treatments are only partially effective. Narcolepsy UK aims to raise the awareness of narcolepsy and provide authoritative information about it to narcoleptics, to the medical profession and to the public. They support the establishment of local self-help groups in which narcoleptics can exchange experience and provide mutual support, and aim to encourage research into the causes and treatment of narcolepsy.
Iona’s training, which is being fitted around her end of year exams, is well under way with daily runs around Arthur’s seat.
Iona says: “Running the race to help my brother William and others like him is a huge motivation. Narcolepsy UK has been exceedingly helpful to our family so we would like to give them something back. While it’s going to be very tough, I’m up for the challenge and the fantastic support and donations I’ve received will hopefully spur me on to the finishing line!”
Iona is no stranger to charity challenges. Whilst still at school she completed a half Marathon in aid of Junior Diabetes, a condition which affects her Godfather. She also volunteers for a week every summer as a helper for the Order of Malta, looking after the sick and disabled.
Iona’s marathon run is the latest charity event to be supported by the Murray family. Scone Palace was the venue for a recent charity fundraising evening in aid of Macmillan Cancer as well as the Cancer Research UK Christmas Fair, whilst on 12th May the Palace parklands will be the venue for Breast Cancer Care’s ‘Pink Ribbonwalk’