People across the West Midlands are being invited to lace up their trainers and get walking this summer in aid of people living with a chronic, life-limiting autoimmune condition called scleroderma. 

The charity Scleroderma and Raynaud’s UK (SRUK) is asking people to get involved with its nationwide walking challenge and raise money for vital research and support. Participants have the option of making their walk physical or virtual and as long or as short as they need.  

The fundraiser aims to raise at least £19,000 to represent the 19,000 people in the UK living with scleroderma. The money will be used to support people affected by the condition and fund research to improve diagnosis, treatment and quality of life. 

Sue Farrington, SRUK Chief Executive, said: “Scleroderma affects thousands of people and there is currently no cure. Through our research, information and support services we’re taking steps to improve the lives of everyone affected by scleroderma. And now we’re asking the public to quite literally do the same. 

“The past year has taken a toll on many people with scleroderma who have been forced to shield and, in some cases, have their treatments put on hold. We want to make sure we can be there for everyone who needs us, which is why we’re asking people to put their best foot forward - a simple act that will help make a world of difference. We know how supportive those in the West Midlands can be, so we’re hoping as many people as possible get involved.”  

Scleroderma occurs when the body’s immune system becomes overactive and begins to attack healthy tissue, causing hardening of the skin and, in some cases, other organs. It is most common in adults over the age of 40 and can also affect teenagers and young adults, although this is much rarer. 

SRUK is the only charity solely focused on improving the lives of people with scleroderma and Raynaud’s in the UK through information, support and ground-breaking research.