Tim Ballard is taking his Movember fundraising efforts thousands of miles across the Atlantic to undertake the New York City marathon – having never ran a race before! Tim is a Global Ambassador for Movember and a cancer survivor, spearheading the ‘Finntashtic’ team of employees from Cannock-based Caterpillar® equipment dealer, Finning UK & Ireland.
Movember is the leading global organisation committed to changing the face of men’s health, tackling prostate cancer, testicular cancer, mental health and suicide prevention. Since 2003, Movember has funded more than 1,250 men’s health projects around the world, challenging the status quo, shaking up men’s health research and transforming the way health services reach and support men.
The Finning ‘Finntastic’ team gathers together each year to generate awareness and funds for this worthy cause, raising over £65,000 in the last three years alone through a mixture of activities including growing comical moustaches, fitness challenges and pub quizzes. For 2019, Tim Ballard, Business Transformation General Manager at Finning, was asked to run the New York Marathon as part of the Movember Global Team.
Tim explains: “When I was first asked to attempt the NYC marathon it was a big shock – I’d not even run a bath before! But with seven months to train, my slippers were put to one side and I purchased a pair of running shoes. Since the beginning of April, I have run over 400 miles in training and completed six races. Tim’s sponsorship tally is currently over £3,200 and the 2019 Movember NYC Marathon Team tally is at £110,000 – but they are hoping to raise a lot more.
Movember is a charity very close to Tim’s heart, having lost friends to male related health issues. “Eight years ago, a good friend of mine took his own life, and it was around this time I also became aware of colleagues at work suffering from prostate cancer. So, I started to get involved with Movember, recruiting colleagues to join in too.
“The creation of the ‘Finntashtic’ team at Finning opened up conversations, and I found a number of colleagues were suffering from men’s health illnesses such as prostate, testicular and mental health issues. I then got kidney cancer myself, and on my return to work after five months off I was even more determined to make a difference with Movember.”
The team has grown over the years and ‘Finntastic’ boasts around 15 – 30 members each year, supported by Tim and the business to not only raise money for Movember, but to also encourage staff to be more open about men’s health issues – whether they are suffering themselves or know someone who is.
“Having Movember as a platform to discuss these issues has been invaluable at Finning, and it’s not just men that are affected, but often the female friends and family of those suffering too. I’ve seen a big shift in the culture at work with people more willing to open up, and for me this is just as important as raising money for the charity.”
For updates on the ‘Finntashtic’ fundraising efforts, including Tim’s journey to the NYC Marathon, join the Facebook group: www.facebook.com/mo.finntashtic, or to donate directly please go to the Movember sponsorship page: https://uk.movember.com/mospace/5321869.
For more information on Cat products or services from Finning, please visit: www.finning.com.