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The History Of Jill's Fundraising Journey

Jill’s Fundraising Journey started with one incredible woman. Jill Goodrum was 46, a wife, mother, grandmother and a widely loved member of her local community. She was a beacon of positivity for everyone around her, and that didn’t stop when she was diagnosed with breast cancer in September 2013. When it was found, the cancer had already spread to her lymph nodes and liver, making her diagnosis terminal.

But Jill wasn’t one to give up. Instead, she decided not only to fight the cancer; but to set herself a target of raising £10,000 to be shared between two charities. Along with this amazing target, she also wanted to raise as much awareness of cancer as well – because if her diagnosis had come earlier, the outlook could have been very different for her.

So she started a Facebook group (www.facebook.com/jillsfundraisingjourney) and started sharing her thoughts, feelings and dreams as she went through the journey. The page gained traction quickly, and the £10,000 target was in sight.

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Farewell Is Not The End

On the 21st May 2014, Jill lost her battle with cancer, and she passed away surrounded by her loved ones. Just 8 short months after her diagnosis, her battle was short, but her loss was devastating to those around her and everyone whose lives she had touched. She left behind five children – James, Lyndsey, Jemma, Amy, and Grace, as well as four grandchildren – Ella, Kylo, Sofia and Elowen.

That £10,000 target was hit, and exceeded, almost exactly a year to the day after Jill received her diagnosis, only a few months after her death. We know that wherever she is now, she’s smiling and laughing with joy because her dream was realised.

Her two eldest daughters had always been inspired by their mum’s tenacious love of life, and of her drive to help others even with the struggles she faced. In her memory, they took Jill’s Fundraising Journey and turned it into a charity. They wanted to keep raising awareness, providing support and guidance for those struggling with cancer, and make their mum proud. They also wanted to make two of Jill’s other dreams come true – to publish a book on her journey, and to open a holiday home for cancer sufferers and their families.

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The Journey So Far

Well, nearly 10 years later both of Jill’s dreams have been realised. Lyndsey and Jemma put all of their mum’s amazing messages into a book, calling it ‘Jill’s Fundraising Journey – The Ugly Truth Of One Mum’s Tragic Battle With Cancer’, and it was published in 2014. You can find out more about the book here.

 

The charity also used the money raised since Jill’s passing to purchase a holiday home in New Milton, which is rented out free of charge to any family that are struggling with a cancer diagnosis for a short break. It’s a small thing, but taking that time away often relieves a lot of the pressure families feel following a cancer diagnosis, and provides some valuable time and space to connect with loved ones.

 

All of this has been done through donations, sponsored events and fundraising. We do not receive any kind of government funding, and all of our trustees are volunteers only. Every penny raised goes back into paying site fees, utility bills, cleaning fees and membership passes for the holiday home, which means we need as much support as possible moving forward.

If you feel a connection to Jill’s story or the work we do for families struggling with a recent cancer diagnosis, we would be very grateful for your support. You can find out how to support us as an individual here, or as a company here. We know we are a small charity, but with your help, we can make a really big difference.

As Jill would say, ‘Reach for the moon and dare to hope.’

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