Why Not Run for charity?
Why Not Run for charity?

The team behind one of Chislehurst’s best known annual fundraisers, Why Not Run, have announced that places for this year’s event are now available.

All funds raised going towards specialist cardiac screening for young people in the local area (through the charity, Cardiac Risk in the Young) aged between 14 and 35. All race participants within this age bracket will receive priority booking for these screenings.

As in previous years, the day will feature a 1km, 2km and 5km Fun Runs – plus new for 2018, an 18 and under “2km Pairs Relay”. Organisers will welcome Bob Neill, MP for Bromley & Chislehurst and Paralympian Noel Thatcher MBE, who will be taking on the role of presesnting prizes!

The multi-terrain cross-country event (which takes place on Sunday 10 June in the grounds of Farringtons School, which has generously supported this event since it began in 2012) will be raising funds for CRY via the locally based and well-known Ben Daniels Memorial Fund (BDMF).

And, the impact of the fundraising carried out by supporters of the BDMF across the South East – not least the Why Not Run team – has been incredible with over £200,000 raised to date and 27 screening days held (resulting in the testing of over 2,500 local young people) – with 9 further sessions already booked in.

Ben tragically died in March 2011 from an undiagnosed heart condition whilst playing football, aged just 15. Since Ben’s sudden death, supporters of his memorial fund (which was established by his parents, Paul and Helena, from Bickley) have continued to work tirelelessly, raising money to host specialist screening sessions in the local area to test as many children and young people as possible.

Every week, 12 young (aged 35 and under) people lose their lives to sudden cardiac death in the UK – a statistic that is now believed to be a conservative estimate. In 80% of cases, there are no signs or symptoms, which is why the charity, Cardiac Risk in the Young (CRY) believes proactive, screening of young people is vitally important. Indeed, CRY’s pioneering screening programme now tests over 27,000 young people every year in the UK.

Now in its 7th year, Why Not Run is a charity fun run for all the family, which raises money for local children’s and young people’s charities. Set up by the Head of Junior PE at Farringtons School, Lavinia Long, the day offers a range of running events and distances for all ages and abilities – and in the past, has rasied a total of £47,842.01.

Event Organiser, Jackie Baker, says; “It’s hard to believe that this is our 7th year of running, Why Not Run – and year on year it’s just got bigger and better! We all love working alongside Paul and his family and we draw such strength and enthusiasm from his endless drive to raise awareness of the importance of cardiac screening in young people and the work of CRY.

“So much so, that we’re delighted to announce that the Why Not Run team will be holding a Music Quiz on Saturday, 29th September to raise further funds for The Ben Daniels Memorial Fund in association with CRY. Watch this space! Or visit the website for further details www.whynotrun.co.uk

Fancy dress will again play a big part in the day, undepinnung the ethos of the day that it is all about the taking part than the winning!

Paul Daniels says; “Why Not Run has become a really important date in Kent’s sporting calendar and we feel so proud and thankful at the way in which this event has continued to grow. I also know Ben would be so proud of everything we have accomplished so far and I really do want to thank everyone from our local community for their ongoing support.”

An ECG (electrocardiogram) test is a simple way to identify the vast majority of abnormalities that can cause sudden deaths in young people. The test is quick, non-invasive and, if necessary, a further echocardiogram (ultrasound scan of the heart) can be taken on the same day to provide further clarity or reassurance.

Chief Executive of CRY, Dr Steven Cox, says; “It is testament to families such as Paul and Helena that our screening programme continues to make such an impact – both in the South East and across the UK. But we still believe screening needs to be extended to all young people and not just those who happen to live close to areas where fundraising and awareness is high. Seven years is an incredible achievement for Paul and everyone who works so hard behind the scenes at Why Not Run 2018. So, once again, one behalf of CRY, I would like to thank everyone who is taking part this year and we really hope everyone has a fun and memorable day!”

To find out more about signing up for Why Not Run 2018, please visit: www.whynotrun.co.uk or email: [email protected] Free race tops will also be offered to the first 200 applicants!

Entry Fees: Pre-registration: £5 for the 1km and 2km races and £10 for the 5km races

On the Day Entry: £10 for the 1km and 2km races and £15 for the 5km races

Venue for the Music Quiz (29 September): Old Elthamians Cricket Club, College Meadow, Marvels Lane, Eltham. SE12 9PH