A Wargrave dad will take part in the iconic TCS London Marathon next month in support of women, children and families.
Rich Bookless, aged 41, is running for Parents And Children Together (PACT), a charity that provides outstanding adoption services, specialist therapeutic support and inspirational community projects.
Rich, who works as a senior manager for global energy services provider Aker Solutions, said the challenge of running a marathon is well outside of his comfort zone.
“Prior to this the furthest I have run in an organised race is 10 miles in the Great South Run. I guess I just love the convenience of running middle distance due to the relatively short timeframe it involves for either training or racing and therefore how easy it can be to squeeze into my busy days.”
A friend who works at PACT reached out to Rich to see if he would be interested in running to support the charity. After hearing about PACT’s work, Rich was quickly sold on the idea despite it being a much longer distance than he was used to.
“The idea of pledging so much time to train for a marathon still does not appeal, and I have a mission on my hands to get fit after an injury delayed my training by six weeks, but I recognise that I can make a difference here for vulnerable people and so I’m going to give it my all in the weeks I have left.”
He is most looking forward to experiencing the amazing atmosphere created by the crowds on the day and raising money to make a difference to the people PACT supports. Rich’s children are keen on sports too, and Rich is excited to see the look on their faces as he crosses the finish line.
Rich is one of nine members of Team PACT who will be running the 26.2 miles around the streets of London on 2nd October.
He has a £1,600 fundraising target and is collecting donations to his page at https://tcslondonmarathon.enthuse.com/pf/richard-bookless
He said: “I know times are hard right now and everyone will be watching their pennies but anything that you could afford to help with my fundraising target will be greatly appreciated both by me and the individuals and families that PACT supports!”
PACT has been building and strengthening families since 1911. PACT creates families through adoption services and provides lifelong adoption support, it empowers women who face multiple disadvantages to make positive changes to their lives through its Alana House Community Project and it supports children to heal from the trauma of domestic abuse through its Bounce Back 4 Kids programme.
Chief executive Natausha van Vliet said: “We are so happy to have a team of extraordinary people in the London Marathon. They have not only committed to running a marathon for PACT but are also working hard to raise lots of sponsorship which will really help us to continue to provide vital support for the families we work with.”