A GROUP of “super mums” and “wonder women” are getting ready to pull on their capes to take on a marathon running challenge to boost two charities.

Seven mums – and a dad – will cover a total of 52 miles this weekend in aid of Down’s Syndrome Scotland and Kindred.

The parents met through ante-natal classes in Dunbar and are taking part in the Edinburgh Marathon Festival, held virtually due to coronavirus restrictions.

Lisa Kitson, Libi Newell, Charlie Hardy and Kelsey Normand will form the ‘Super Mums’, with Catherine Devereux, Laura Bell, Sarah Callow and Jonathan Newell as the ‘Wonder Women’, with both teams taking part in the relay event.

East Lothian Courier: The Dunbar mums

And another member of the ante-natal classes – Caroline Nelson – is providing the costumes for the runners, to ensure they look super as they complete the challenge.

For Caroline, Catherine and Laura, the causes are close to their hearts. Caroline’s son Harris and Laura’s son Sandy were both born with cerebral palsy, while Catherine’s daughter Sophie has Down’s syndrome.

Catherine, 35, said the two charities had both provided support.

She said: “Once I was able to start looking into things, Down’s Syndrome Scotland were just able to provide me a lot of information, a lot of support and a lot of reassurance – just simply knowing they were on the end of a phone if I had any queries, be it what I need to be thinking about medically, what appointment we might be thinking or approaching coming up.”

It was through Down’s Syndrome Scotland that Catherine, who works in events, was pointed in the direction of Kindred, which supports parents of children with complex needs with advocacy, information and emotional support.

Catherine added: “I have been able to benefit from their counselling services, which have been a great help to me, as well as Laura.”

The mums all met through ante-natal classes held in Dunbar Medical Centre in the autumn of 2018.

Since their babies were born, each has kept in touch.

Catherine said: “We were encouraged at the classes to share numbers and make our WhatsApp group, which has kept going since our children were born and they are now two to two-and-a-half.”

Together, the mums, who all live in Dunbar or previously lived in the town, are taking on the running challenge, with each lacing up their running shoes – and donning their costumes, with Jonathan vowing to pull on a skirt if they reach their fundraising target – to run four, six or eight miles.

Catherine told the Courier running had proven beneficial not just physically but mentally as well.

She said: “I actually started doing Couch to 5k when my daughter was about eight weeks old.

“I had run before but had quite a long break from it.

“It was quite a good thing for me to latch onto and I really love to run with some people as well because I had been doing it largely on my own. It is incredibly beneficial not just physically but mentally.”

Eddie McConnell, chief executive of Down’s Syndrome Scotland, wished the runners well.

He said: “We are so grateful to the Dunbar Super Mums and Dunbar Wonder Women for choosing to support Down’s Syndrome Scotland.

“The Edinburgh Marathon Relay is a huge challenge to undertake and their commitment in taking on this challenge to support our charity means a great deal to us.

“Their fabulous support and the funds they have raised will help us continue to support families and people with Down’s syndrome reach their fullest potential.”

A spokeswoman for Kindred also wished each of the runners well.

She said: “Kindred has a new dedicated four-person office based at the new Royal Hospital for Children and Young People. This is better located for East Lothian families than the old hospital, now many of the children’s services are in the same building so appointment times can be shorter.

“Kindred’s hospital team offers families, emotional and practical support as well as being able to support them at clinical meetings, to understand complex medical information, so they can advocate on behalf of the family or simply help them best represent their child’s needs.”

To support the mums, go to uk.virginmoneygiving.com/Team/DunbarSuperMumsandDunbarWonderWomen