Radio DJ aims to bust HIV stigma by running marathon for Terrence Higgins Trust (THT), after interviewing the charity on his breakfast show.
Radio DJ, Chris Holliday, will be raising funds to support people living with HIV, as he takes on the London Marathon in support of THT.
Chris, 34, who presents Gaydio’s breakfast show, aims to increase knowledge of HIV and raise money to support the HIV and sexual health charity by taking on the 26.2 mile stretch in London.
Chris said: “I was chatting to someone from THT on our show about fundraising and suddenly said “I’ll run the marathon for you!”
Shortly after I got a text from my husband asking if I’m actually doing it – I thought I’ve just committed to doing this live on air so I best start training.
I’ve always admired THT and the work they do. In my job I speak a lot to charities, but I’ve got a personal connection to them as I have friends who have been affected by HIV.
Recently, HIV support services across the UK have and are being cut, but we can’t allow this to happen. We need THT and the work they do to support people living with HIV.”
There are around 101,000 people living with HIV in the UK, and although today someone with HIV can live a long and healthy life thanks to advances in treatment, stigma and myths around the virus still prevail.
“A lot of our Gaydio listeners, many who are LGBT+, are already aware of what THT do – which is great – but by running the marathon for the charity, I’m able to talk to friends and family who might not know about HIV.
“Today HIV isn’t a death sentence, but there are other issues people with HIV face, such as stigma and cuts to services, and it’s important people know about these.”
Chris is now getting people talking about HIV and raising money by offering personalised radio jingles and a chance to spend the day with him and co-host, Emma – no touching allowed – all to support people living with HIV.
“This will be my second London Marathon. The first was back in 2011 when I did it dressed as Cheryl Cole. Now I’m a bit older and feeling it. I’ve hurt my knee so I’ve had to be careful.”
“I’m about to take on my last long run before the marathon. It’ll be 22 miles and my best friend Jamie is coming up from London to support me. He’ll be borrowing my co-host’s bike to ride alongside me and will be on hand with Vaseline!”
Tom Woolveridge, Community Fundraising Officer at THT, said: “The awareness raising and fundraising that Chris is doing makes such a big difference to people living with and affected by HIV. He is already a fantastic champion of HIV awareness to his Gaydio listeners, so we’re incredibly grateful he’s decided to support us even further by taking on the marathon for Terrence Higgins Trust in his spare time. The money raised will help us deliver vital services to help us end the HIV epidemic, improve sexual health and empower people to live well with HIV.
We’re delighted to have Chris and Gaydio’s support as he runs his second marathon, and we’re wishing the best of luck to everyone running for us this year!”
To have a personal jingle or read the weather on Chris’ show, click here:
To find out more about fundraising for THT, click here: