Why I Run: Anna Lawrence Chair of the YCF

Anna Lawrence

Anna Lawrence, Chair of the Young Centenary Foundation

Last year I ran the City2Surf for the first time. Well… I ran/walked it.

I was determined to run the entire way and started a training regime but after a back injury and general laziness my training kind of…fell to the wayside.

On the day of the City2Surf I decided just to see what I could do and not beat myself up if I didn’t run the entire way – I actually did an alright job and walked only up that infamous heartbreak hill and, you know, when I just really needed a break.

I was quite surprised at how much I could run but it was the adrenaline/embarrassment that kept me going. By the end, however, I had blisters as big as my feet and was suffering from some pretty hard-core exhaustion.

Which is why THIS YEAR I will train. I will stick to a regime. I will run the entire way. I will not get ridiculous blisters. Yeah yeah, you’ve heard it all before but watch me! Being fit is probably not a bad idea for my acting career either.

I also just bought some hot pink running shoes so I’m gonna look preetttty awesome.

It’s pretty clear why I am doing the City2Surf due to the location of this blog post but I thought I would share with you why I am interested in raising funds for the Centenary Institute.

When I first heard about the Centenary Institute I was intrigued, but to be completely honest the term ‘medical research’ didn’t exactly jump out and grab me as something that I would necessarily want to dedicate a lot of time raising funds for. Despite this, I went along to the first get together of the Young Centenary Foundation (YCF) and within the first 20 minutes I had changed my mind completely. I met some truly wonderful scientists who are so passionate about what they do and I was inspired by their enthusiasm.

It was World TB Day and we learnt some pretty shocking statistics; 2 billion people carry the TB bacteria which is a 1/3 of the world’s population, every 20 seconds someone dies of TB and 200 children die of TB every day. Before this event, Tuberculosis wasn’t even on my radar.

Touring the labs at the Institute two things struck me: the enormity of this task; and just how much progress these guys have made. Through the Centenary, I have seen the exact makeup of the cells that cause susceptibility to medicine-resistant TB; and watched as young scientists tirelessly worked to eradicate this susceptibility.

It’s not just TB. The young scientists at the Centenary Institute are the ones working to find the cures to a huge range of infectious and cardiovascular diseases which one day may save me or someone I know.

I am now the Chair of the YCF and am surrounded by a group of young, intelligent, creative and enthusiastic members that care about this issue as much as I do. Every meeting is a truly wonderful and exciting experience and it’s amazing to see these people give so much of their time and energy.

We realise that the future is the responsibility of youth, which is why we are going to target, involve and promote young people (20-35) in our events to come.

Anyway that’s enough from me! If you want to hear more about the YCF or are interested in being a sponsor then hit me up at: annalouiselawrence@gmail.com