Retired accountant Susan Hausberger is facing the challenge of a lifetime as she gears up to cycle from her home in the Tyrol to the Macmillan unit in Christchurch. Sue, 58, when not sitting at her computer, is usually seen on the golf course or doing short bike-trips in and around Nassereith in the Tyrol, where she has been living since 1971, but on August 12th she will be donning her tricot and cycling 800 miles to raise money for Macmillan Caring Locally, based at the Macmillan Unit at Christchurch Hospital.
“Although I hated it as a child, I do quite a bit of sport in the meantime,” says Sue, “but the last time I cycled a distance like that was 12 years ago! Now I’m doing a 60 mile ride every week in addition to my normal training. And I’m also cutting back on the carbohydrates, to compensate for the extra weight I’ll be carrying!”
The hard work will all be worthwhile for Sue if she succeeds in raising £1,500 for Macmillan Caring Locally. This amount will buy a portable hospital bed that Macmillan deliver into people’s homes when a patient would prefer to be cared for at home. It will also fund an O2 saturation machine to be used in the Community by the Palliative Care Sisters.
Sue’s father, Don Wright, was diagnosed with cancer five years ago and the charity has been a constant support ever since, enabling her 79 year old Mum, Barbara, to take care of him at home in Bournemouth until only 11 days before he died in January this year. “When Dad’s illness got worse, it was a very difficult time for me,” Sue explained. “I live so far away in Austria and didn’t know how long Mum would cope, but she was put in touch with Macmillan Caring Locally who has been amazing. In addition to monitoring Dad’s progress, the palliative nurses helped Mum with paperwork for applications, supplied or advised on equipment to make life easier and came whenever needed for advice or support. During Dad’s last days, which he spent in the Macmillan Unit at Christchurch hospital, I was able spend a lot of time with him there and was really impressed by what they did for him and how kind they were to us.
“The Macmillan Charity did so much for us, now it’s time I did something for them. We asked for donations to the charity instead of flowers at the funeral, which I am sure was also in Dad’s interest. We collected much more that I had expected, which will go a long way to helping others, and this gave me the incentive to try and raise more.”
Her family and her Mum’s neighbours have also been very generous and she hopes other people in the local community will support her in her transeuropean cycle challenge. Sue is well known in her village for her work as chairwoman of the Active Club and leader of a self-support group as well as at her local Golf Club.
“Every penny that is raised will be going to the Charity as all of my travel expenses will be self financed. I want to help Macmillan Caring Locally to continue their invaluable work supporting families like mine.”
You can sponsor Sue by visiting her online fundraising page. You can pay by credit or debit card, and the money will go directly to Macmillan Caring Locally. Where supporters are UK taxpayers, the charity will automatically receive 28% extra in Gift Aid, which makes Justgiving the most efficient way of sponsoring Sue. You can follow Sue’s progress on her blog