A fun run to raise money to support research into and raise awareness of a bacterial infection has been hailed a great success.
The first ever Strep B Stomp took place on Worthing seafront on Sunday, and organiser Tania Holmes said it went so well she is already thinking about planning next year’s run.
Tania, 33, of Galsworthy Road, Goring, said: “On Sunday, over 100 people turned up to support the event and run the Strep B Stomp. Though we can’t yet confirm, so far, it looks like we’ve raised in the region of £3,000, as well as lots of GBS awareness. I’m so grateful to everybody who took part. This year’s winner was Paul Clarke who came in at exactly 25 minutes. Massive thank you to Smart Partitions and Gas Smart Heating who sponsored this event and made it possible.”
Tania has been heavily involved in raising awareness of group B strep since she lost her newborn son Blake to the condition just 25 hours after his birth in 2009.
It is the UK’s most common cause of life-threatening infection in newborn babies. It is a normally-occurring bacterium which is found in many men and women that is harmless for most but, if it is passed from mother to baby, it can cause long-term health problems or even be fatal.
A swab test can be carried out late during pregnancy to found out if the mother is a carrier.
If she is, it would not necessarily mean she would pass the infection to her baby but she could be given antibiotics at the onset of labour as a preventative measure.
Tania has been campaigning for the infection to be routinely screened for during pregnancy testing, and in January joined forces with other bereaved parents to deliver a petition to the Department of Health. The petition was rejected, but Tania said she will continue to raise awareness.
Jane Plumb MBE, chief executive of Group B Strep Support, said: “We are so grateful to everyone who took part in the first ever Strep B Stomp fun run, and would like to say a huge thank you to everyone involved. Group B Strep Support relies on fundraising so events like this help us continue raising awareness and providing vital support for families affected.”