Go Lynsey go!
With the 2017 Deep RiverRock Belfast City Half Marathon coming up on Sunday 17th September, Lynsey Weir is training to run the 13.1-mile race and calling on local supporters to help her raise funds for learning disability charity Mencap.
Lynsey’s half marathon plans follow her completion of the 2017 Deep RiverRock Belfast City Marathon in which she ran the full 26.2 miles in aid of Mencap, the official charity partner of the event. In addition to running the race, Lynsey also recruited her co-workers at William Coates Ltd, where she works in Mallusk, to take part in the marathon’s Team Relay event and 8-Mile Walk, all for Mencap.
Lynsey and her colleagues raised more than £2,000 in May and Lynsey is now taking on the half marathon in September to raise even more funds for the learning disability charity. She said running and raising money for Mencap has given her a great sense of achievement.
“I completed my first marathon in May 2017 and then finished my first half marathon in June 2017 after having got into running around Christmas time,” Lynsey said. “Following a very difficult time in my life, I needed something to focus on to try and distract myself. I wanted to push myself to achieve something I hadn’t before and that led me to running so I fully immersed myself and signed up to run 26.2 miles. With training three days a week and the encouragement of my friends and family, I crossed the finish line in May and it was an amazing feeling to accomplish something that I never thought would be possible.”
Lynsey and her fellow employees at William Coates have since named Mencap their official charity partner for the next year. The company is aiming to raise £10,000 by July 2018, with Lynsey eager to add £1,000 to the total from her half marathon efforts.
“Before I ran the full marathon in aid of Mencap, I was invited to the Mencap Centre and I got to experience first-hand the inspiring work they do to help those with a learning disability. Being able to support such a great charity really encourages me to cross that finish line.”
More than 1,000 people ran the half marathon for Mencap last year and Margaret Kelly, Director of Mencap Northern Ireland, said she hopes Lynsey’s dedication inspires other runners to take on the half marathon challenge for the charity. Margaret said:
“We would like to thank Lynsey for taking on the half marathon in aid of Mencap. It is because of people like Lynsey and all those at William Coates who dedicate their time to support us that we can continue to help children with a learning disability and their families in Northern Ireland.
“We continue to provide crucial programmes across Northern Ireland, but we want to be able to reach even more families. Money raised from the half marathon will help fund our brand new family support programme which will offer guidance and support to families when a child is diagnosed with a learning disability. This programme is now in the planning stages so we can’t wait to launch it next year and help as many families as we can.
“We encourage everyone to ‘Step Up for Mencap’ at the 2017 Deep RiverRock Belfast City Half Marathon in September! Even if you can’t run the race, we encourage you to donate what you can. All donations will help children and young people with a learning disability in Northern Ireland reach their potential.”
For more information about how you can support Mencap at the 2017 Deep RiverRock Belfast City Half Marathon, contact the Fundraising Team on 028 90 691 351, email firstname.lastname@example.org or visit mencap.org.uk/belfasthalfmarathon. The final deadline date for entries is Friday 8th September 2017.