Crossing the line: charity runner reaches 2,012km target
It's mission accomplished for charity fundraiser Chris Marshall, who has run 2,012 kilometres (1,250 miles) in 2012, helping to fund 12 clean water wells in 12 countries.
Chris (40), from Swansea, is raising funds for UK charity Penny Appeal's Clean Water Campaign. Nearly one billion people don't have access to clean water; the water they do have is often contaminated and makes them sick and unable to work or study – which in turn makes it harder to break free from poverty.
After running nearly a marathon a week since 1 January, Chris' "Run2012 Challenge" has raised over £6,150, and has helped to fund wells in Afghanistan, Bangladesh, Gambia, India, Indonesia, Kashmir, Nepal, Niger, Pakistan, Somalia, Sri Lanka and Sudan.
Chris, who ran his 2,012th kilometre on 2nd December, said: "Crossing that finishing line was a great feeling, but it's even more rewarding to know that communities in 12 different countries will have access to clean water thanks to the generosity and compassion of the people who sponsored me."
Penny Appeal Chairman, Adeem Younis, said: "Everyone at Penny Appeal has been hugely impressed by Chris' determination and commitment to this challenge, and we congratulate him on his success. We really shouldn't underestimate the dedication it takes to run four or five times a week in all weathers, and those early morning runs in the wind and the rain can't have been much fun!
"He has been a real inspiration and I know his dedication has touched many people. And what a result to have provided clean water to 12 communities! He's definitely earned a rest, and he should be proud of his achievements."
Chris completed the 2,012 kilometres over 177 runs, burning approximately 200,000 calories (the equivalent of 600 slices of pizza!) and wearing out two pairs of running shoes in the process. He even completed his first full marathon along the way, but doesn't class himself as a natural runner.
He commented: "This all started when I was looking for something that would challenge me physically. I have never been the fittest or most athletic of people but I started running and was surprised to find myself enjoying it. I decided at the end of 2011 to run 2,012km in 2012, and to do so for Penny Appeal because, worldwide, nearly one in five deaths of children under the age of five is due to dirty water, and I don't think that's acceptable in this day and age.
"Hopefully, the 12 wells supported by my Run2012 challenge will make a real difference to the communities who will benefit from them, and I'm grateful to everyone who has supported me along the way."
The Run2012 Challenge continues until the end of the month. Every penny donated will go to Penny Appeal's Clean Water campaign and will help to change the lives of countless people in some of the world's poorest communities. There are three ways to donate:
1) At www.justgiving.com/run2012k
2) By text, using Vodaphone's JustTextGiving service. Text TWTW55 £5 or TWTW55 £10 to 70070 to donate £5 or £10. Texts are free and 100% of your gift will go to Penny Appeal.
3) By calling Penny Appeal direct at +44 (0)1924 231088 - please don't forget to say that you're donating to the Run2012 Challenge.
TUESDAY 11 DEC 2012