Paula Radcliffe on her 50-mile Equator fundraiser in aid of Shoe4Africa

Virgin Radio

22 Nov 2021, 12:14

Credit: Getty

Credit: Getty

The British marathon legend joined the Chris Evans Breakfast Show with Sky to talk about her 50-mile fundraiser, called Paula’s Families On Track Equator Relay, in aid of Shoe4Africa, and explained how you can join in.

On Christmas Eve, Paula will lead a group of runners on a continuous 50-mile relay from the equator to the site of a new children’s cancer hospital. She told Chris: “I was heartbroken and shocked to learn that, where in Europe and in the Western World the medical care is great, one child in ten will sadly will lose their life to cancer, but in Africa it’s nine in ten, so it’s completely turned on its head, primarily because it’s just diagnosed so late and the treatment options aren’t there. There isn’t one single paediatric cancer hospital on the whole of the Sub Saharan African continent. So this will be the first one.

“So, we are raising money by running. They’ve raised the majority of the funds already, but we are trying to add to that.”

Paula will be accompanied by her daughter Isla, who was diagnosed with cancer in 2020. There will also be some other big name runners joining the relay. “There will be the likes of Emmanuel Korir, and I think Eluid Kipchoge might even come in to join in for the last 10k. So yeah, a little bit of help there!” Paula said.

She added: “It’s going to be a Christmas with a difference!”

Families and schools can join the fundraising campaign and run their own 50-mile relay challenge. Paula told Chris: “I didn’t just want to just go out there and take part in the relay, I wanted to actually take some money out with me, and I know that the Families on Track supporters can do that.”

If you want to take part, you can log on to and sign up for free as a family or school class pledging to collectively run 50 miles. Paula explained: “We’re laying down a virtual challenge, where you have from Saturday, which was World Children’s Day, until we do it on Christmas Eve, to log up your 50 miles as a family unit. So, 50 miles, 80k, whichever way you want to do it, however you want to do it, and all of the money will go to the charity.

“We don’t really mind how you do it. Whether you do it on Strava, whether you do it on Garmin, whether you do it on Nike Running, whatever you do it on, it doesn’t matter. Whether you log it up on a little chart at home, it really doesn’t matter.”

She added: “Because we’re asking families to go through and set up their own justgiving page, Nike have come on board and we will send out T-shirts to anyone who raises over £50 on their justgiving page. But all of their funds will go to their justgiving site, so we’re not taking a penny of that.”

Sign up for your own Virtual Equator Relay via

For more great interviews listen to The Chris Evans Breakfast Show with Sky, weekdays from 6:30am on Virgin Radio, or catch up on-demand here.