On Monday, May 7, staff, local coaches, board members and friends of PeacePlayers International – Northern Ireland ran the Belfast City Marathon in two relay teams. Emma Ringland, Katrina Fitzpatrick, Jim Fitzpatrick, Gareth Harper, and Joan Shine comprised the first team, while Garry Longfield, Tony McGaharan, Rory O’Neil, James Hughes, and Darryl Petticrew rounded out the second team. The fundraiser was organized by PPI-NI Intern Garry Lonfield who had this to say about the event:
When I first joined PeacePlayers I was asked to complete a task of organising a fundraiser, and after looking at various ideas, I finally settled on one idea which I thought would be a lot of fun, as well as one that would generate a lot of support. Thankfully, my fellow coaches agreed to help, and as a result, PPI-NI had two relay teams in the Belfast City Marathon!
The total distance of the marathon is 26.2 miles, and the relay event was spilt into five stages: the longest leg was 7 miles and the shortest leg was 3.5 miles. Rory O’Neil and Jim Fitzpatrick bravely volunteered to complete the 7-mile stage, and conquered the long trek. In reference to the 7.1 miles he ran, Rory said, “Yes, the 7 miles up the Antrim road was tough, but to be honest it wasn’t that tough when you’ve got kids screaming ‘Coach Rory!!!’ or parents yelling ‘Go PeacePlayers’ along the way. You can tell we work a lot in North Belfast when you’re running through the rain and you hear random kids and parents cheering you on.” Well done!
To fundraise for the event, PPI-NI collected pounds from program participants and also created an online donation page for local supporters, family and friends. Many thanks to all that contributed to this fundraising event! It’s not to late to to donate online if you would like to support the cause: http://www.justgiving.com/PPINI