Georgia-Mae, local hero!

Student nurse gives up on record time to save runner who fell at Cambridge Half Marathon

A student nurse rescued a man more than twice her age during the recent Cambridge half-marathon.

Georgia-Mae was on track to complete the annual Cambridge race in two hours 15 minutes on behalf of the Samaritans, when she spotted a man in need.

Seven miles from the finishing line at the race on March 4 66-year-old Trevor, who was celebrating his birthday on, stumbled on a pothole and fell over.

The 18-year-old Anglia Ruskin student said: “He wanted to carry on. He said to me ‘Why are you stopping?’

“I said ‘I’m a student nurse and wearing a Samaritan top. I mean, I can’t not stop.

“We ended up walking for about a mile. He kept on running every so often, then walking, and he had his arm over my shoulder… we made the finishing line in two hours 55.”

Georgia-Mae was part of a student team at Anglia Ruskin who trained for the run to raise funds for charity.

After she dropped in on an information evening at Cambridge Samaritans she decided to run on the charity’s behalf, raising over £700, and become a Samaritan ‘listening volunteer’.

As the race progressed the cross-generation duo ended up helping each other.

She continued: “The hardest part was stopping and starting, because your legs are so tired.

“As soon as we stopped, he was saying ‘Come on, keep running.’ He was so sweet.

“At the start, I was following him and having trouble keeping up. He was really quick. He had trained really well for it.”

The experience also made Georgie-Mae realise how important the act of listening is to finding common ground.

“I found out he came from quite close to my home in Lincolnshire,” she said.

“He was amazingly grateful – and at the end his family were too because they knew how much he’d wanted to do it. Since then he’s sent me messages on Facebook, thanking me.

“As a student nurse, I have come into contact with so many people from many walks of life, and it has really helped me understand that, sometimes, all it takes is for someone just to stop and listen.”

Georgia-Mae now hopes others will also consider volunteering and fundraising for the Samaritans.

Cambridge Samaritans is formed of 140 volunteers from all backgrounds and age groups.

They share a common goal in providing a round-the-clock, safe place to talk for anyone struggling to cope, whoever they are.

To become a qualified listening volunteer Georgia-Mae faces an interview followed by eight three-hour modules of training over nine weeks, then six-months on-the- job training.

She said: “From just one information evening, and I’m sure the rest of my training as well, I will have learnt so much more about emotional support, mental health, the organisation, and simply how to listen.

“Three hours… it really isn’t a lot when you think about it.

“I’m a student paediatric nurse full-time. I’m used to working 13-hour days and still having to go home to do everything. More of us could give up three hours a week.”

More volunteers are needed to answer the increasing number of calls coming in.