Run2Help – the charitable RunTogether group giving back to the local community
08 December 2022
RunTogether is all about community, and that is certainly what Kim Lewington MBE has created with Run2Help in Gloucestershire! As a Run Leader, you are often looked upon for technical guidance and route planning during sessions, however Kim is much more than that. She is truly inspirational, linking the local community and charities with runners – supporting any way she can.
Despite only being a small group of around 15-20 people, RunTogether group Run2Help have made their presence heard in the local community, with their purpose to enjoy running, raise money, and support others. With runners from aged 20-70+, this inclusive group has grown a special bond and become one big running family!
The background of Run2Help
Let’s hear from founder and Run Leader Kim Lewington about where the charitable RunTogether group idea began.
“I have worked for local charity Fly2Help for 8 years. They have a portacabin at Gloucestershire Airport which I thought would be a perfect base for RunTogether sessions, and from there I started the running group. The runners consistently come to sessions and have loved getting involved. It was fantastic to introduce them to a small local charity I am passionate about. Some runners now volunteer at Fly2Help, seeing first-hand where their donations go and who they are helping.
"The charity is very close to my heart. We use aviation to make memory days for people in challenging situations whether dealing with bereavement, terminal illness, or life restricting problems. After working in aviation for 40 years, it’s great to see how uplifting flying can be! We don’t only support those suffering, but also their families too.”
RunTogether helping runners to help others
RunTogether is a national running community with one shared passion, made up of lots of smaller group pockets all over the country. However, we can often underestimate the power of running in helping individuals, but also the sizeable support it shows to the local community.
“I have been a runner for most of my life and have loved it. When I got my LiRF qualification, I realised I could set up my own group and get more people in the local area to love running and RunTogether enabled me to do this.
"Setting up Run2Help has been the best thing I’ve ever done. Not only have I made new friends, but all the runners have also become friends with each other, and we have made one happy running family! For me personally, they really helped me through a tough time with my health, and we can then give back and support anyone else going through hard times through our charity donations.”
Supporting local charities through running
Kim’s support doesn’t stop there, she has also set up a Couch to 5k group for Maggie’s Cancer Centre in Cheltenham, supporting those who want to get back into fitness after their treatment. After battling breast cancer in 2018, Kim is keen to give back and support charities very close to her heart.
“Recently Gloucestershire Airport ran an initiative called FlyPink where pilots wore pink epaulettes to raise awareness for breast and prostate cancer. The airport wanted their aviation students who enjoy running to get involved, and so I offered my help. We organised a charity run off the back, and the students and staff together raised over £900 split between Breast Cancer UK and Prostate Cancer UK.”
This month Kim will be keeping with the aviation theme, as she will be supporting the Run the Runways campaign, running each day in December the length of different airport runways to raise money for Aviation Action, a mental health charity. Best of luck to Kim with this challenge!
Are you supporting your local community?
If your RunTogether group is supporting your local community, we would love to hear from you!
Whether you are helping small charities, supporting the elderly with walking group or reaching out to get more people enjoying activity – we want to hear all about it.
We’d love to feature your story and share it with the RunTogether community. Send us an email to firstname.lastname@example.org