SIXTY MEMBERS of Dudley Kingswinford (DK) Running Club have completed solo runs to raise money for NHS charities who are supporting staff working tirelessly to care for coronavirus patients.
Event organiser Race The Distance launched the NHS Challenge, ‘Do What You Can’, which encourages people to devote one of their daily exercises a day to running, walking, cycling or any other form of physical activity in return for a medal.
The DK solo runners all completed various distances, starting and finishing at their homes, with most running either 5K or 10K. Some members were self isolating so joined in by riding exercise bikes in their garage or walking around their garden.
Following their activity in the club’s blue and white hoops, the DKers took selfies which were then sent to club member Sally Husselbee who designed a collage including all runners, the NHS Challenge medal and the DK logo.
Sally took part in the running challenge herself but needed no incentive to do so as she works in a frontline high dependency role for the West Midlands Ambulance Service (WMAS) and is training to be an emergency medical technician.
Sally recently tested positive for Covid-19 but recovered and returned to work with WMAS today (14 April).
“As a frontline medic during Covid-19 I know how vital running is for our mental, as well as physical, health. It was fantastic to see so many fellow DK runners take up this challenge, raising funds to support staff caring for patients.”
All participants in the NHS Challenge pay £12.99 for a specially designed medal which incorporates thanks to the NHS and key workers for their role in fighting the pandemic.
One hundred per cent of all profits are being donated to NHS Charities Together. Donations will fund well-being packs/gifts for staff and volunteers on hospital wards and departments, cost of travel, parking, accommodation for NHS staff and volunteers’ expenses along with other items requested by NHS charities.
The NHS Challenge has so far raised £35,000 for NHS Charities Together.
While the country remains under lockdown and with social distancing in force, DK members are trying to stay fit by going for solo runs close to their homes.
The club’s governing body, UK Athletics, has suspended all athletics activity until at least 31st May. This means the DK beginners’ course and the annual DK10K, both scheduled to take place in the next few weeks, will be postponed until further notice. Both events will be reviewed in the autumn.
If the club cannot rearrange for 2020 then all runners who have already registered for the DK10K will be offered either a full refund or the option to have their entry rolled over for 2021.