A Very Personal Request
I thought long and hard about putting this out in the public domain. But then I thought that success in any activity is all about reaching out beyond your comfort zone.
The comfort zone in this case is that this is family. This is about my eldest son, Simon and his efforts to raise money for a charity to which he is giving a real commitment by his time and involvement. That’s him on the left – and he has no idea that I’m about to try to send everyone I know to read this post about him!
The quick story is that Simon has committed himself to working as a volunteer at the Samaritans. Those in the UK will know this is a charity that provides telephone support for those who feel so desperate about their situation that they are thinking of taking their own life. The purpose is first to persuade them to think again and then to support as they try to find a way out of the situation that is making them feel so bad in the first place.
The Samaritans receives no Government money and is funded 96% by voluntary donations. Volunteers who work there have to commit themselves firstly to the training and then to giving a specific number of working shifts every week to man the telephones – so working for the Samaritans is a serious commitment by anyone and I’m seriously proud of my son.
That takes us to the next part. Simon started off running to keep fit, (he’s a big lad, I wonder where he got it from?) inevitably got the bug and decided he wanted to run the London Marathon, all 26 miles and some yards of it. Demand for places in the London Marathon is so high that places are allocated by lottery – and he didn’t get a place. Ironically, his partner, Jon, that he wanted to run with, did get a place through his running club.
Next shot is that the Samaritans have some places for people who run to raise money for the Samaritans – but the places were all taken and you have to commit to raising £1,800 before you can guarantee the place. So some time ago he put his name on the waiting list, resigned himself to watching from the sidelines then went off on holiday.
If you are still with me then we are getting to the point. Yes, he was told he had a place in the Samaritans team while he was on holiday. Yes he’s in a panic of insufficient training and inadequate sponsorship. And yes, I would really appreciate it if you would go and take a look at their sponsorship page at www.justgiving.com/simonandjonmarathon
You may never have met me, you may barely know me from online forums etc, you certainly don’t know my son and you may have no real reason to give. But please do so anyway. He’s already running out of friends, family and acquaintances to ask, he’s only half way so far to meeting the requirement and with only a few weeks to go has no time to work up a big sponsorship campaign.
Any amount will do. Just know that your gift, however small, is for absolutely the best cause – to help fund the Samaritans who work to protect life when it is at its most vulnerable.
Please go here now and give whatever you are comfortable with: www.justgiving.com/simonandjonmarathon
PS I have to mention No 2 son just so I don’t provoke a fight! This is him – and I’m seriously proud of him too.