Running for the community
20 September 2011
Despite the recent disturbances in Tottenham and Haringey, running is providing a welcome opportunity for the community to come together and make a positive difference.
RUN! - England Athletics' project designed to get more Londoners into athletics, working with Run England - and Run England are aiming to give disadvantaged and under-represented areas of the community more chances to start running.
Thanks to a number of new partnerships, there are some fantastic new chances for people to get involved with running together in groups and gain some skills by qualifying as Group Leaders by taking the Leadership in Running Fitness (LiRF) course.
Run England groups currently take part in local parkruns and there are plans for a 5k fun run thanks to the help of some local partners - London Heathside AC, Tottenham Hotspur Foundation (THF), NHS, Arsenal in the Community and Bowel Cancer UK. Thanks guys!
We are also working with THF on the ‘Think Fit’ project - which aims to get more women from disadvantaged backgrounds and those caring for children under the age of 16 doing sport – by helping them set up groups led by qualified and insured Group Leaders.
Another project that we are working on is the Sports MATE project which works to support and mentor disabled people to gain the confidence to participate in sport. Running is very inclusive and accessible, but not everyone has the confidence to join a club, so RUN! has been working with Sports MATE and THF to give disabled people in London the chance to do running, and to prepare athletics clubs for the interest that the 2012 Paralympics is sure to spark!
There is a huge place for running in the poorest and most deprived communities and there are people out there that could use their talents in a productive and potentially life changing way, if given the right opportunities, and we hope we can help make more of that happen.