Marathon effort and 'world's toughest race' in aid of Stevenage addiction rehab centre

PUBLISHED: 08:30 02 April 2019 | UPDATED: 08:44 03 April 2019

George Livingston and Vicky Cottom have their sights set on raising as much money as they can for The Living Room. Picture: Mark Wiseman.

George Livingston and Vicky Cottom have their sights set on raising as much money as they can for The Living Room. Picture: Mark Wiseman.

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Two supporters of a rehab centre which has changed the lives of people gripped by addiction will be pushing their limits when they run to raise money for the charity.

The Living Room was founded by Janis Feely MBE at The Glebe on Chells Way in Stevenage in May 2000, after she successfully overcame her own addiction to alcohol and prescription drugs.

The charity, which also has a centre in St Albans, supports people with addictions to anything from alcohol and drugs to gambling and sex through free group counselling, peer support and workshop therapies.

Supporters George Livingston and Vicky Cottom are on course to collectively raise more than £5,000 for The Living Room.

George, an experienced runner, has secured a place in the Marathon des Sables - one of the world’s toughest races.

Competitors must run 250km - 156 miles - over six days through the Sahara desert, carrying all their own food and equipment with them.

The ultra-marathon starts on Friday in southern Morocco. George said: “I know a lot of people struggle with addiction and that it can have a devastating impact on people’s lives.

“I wanted to do something for a local charity and The Living Room is a great cause. Their focus on support, not just on an individual struggling, but also on their family is something that felt like a great approach.

“I also wanted to find a relatively small charity where any fundraising could hopefully have a big impact. The Living Room has been an ideal choice and a very worthwhile cause.”

Vicky Cottom, who works at Stevenage’s Lister Hospital, will be running the London Marathon for the first time on April 28.

She said: “I am so very pleased to be able to support The Living Room as I feel passionately about helping people close to us and within our local community.

“I work as a nurse within the NHS and see daily the effects of various addictions on individuals, families and the wider community.

“I also have a close friend who has benefited from the amazing help and support The Living Room gives.

“It’s for these reasons I’ll pound the pavements on April 28.”

To sponsor George or Vicky visit uk.virginmoneygiving.com and search for either’George Livingston’ or ‘Vicky Cottom’.

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