I’m pleased to say that yesterday I completed the 12th Marathon of the year. This brought the curtain down on a challenging but important year. With no marathon available to run, I decided to do a self-made marathon and head for Richmond Park, London, it was cold, it took 4 hours but I did it.
My aim this year was to get more people to understand and take an interest in the conflict of the DRC, because sadly not enough people appreciate the unstable environment people have to live in Eastern Congo. To give you an indication of what your donation has helped create this year, I’d be keen to show you some of the outputs that you’ve helped achieve:
This is only a selection of the coverage, but a tentative estimate is that approximately half a million people will have seen coverage of the DRC because of the challenge of running 12 marathons in 12 months for Congo.
I wanted to get more people to take an interest in the DRC and understand why I’m so passionate about the DRC and I have been overwhelmed by the messages of support that I have received. It has been astonishing to see people channel their support into such generous donations. Women for Women and Amnesty International have asked me to pass on their thanks and wish you a merry Christmas.
With your support I’ve been able to raise over £8,028, with a further £2000 donated through GiftAid. To put this in perspective for every mile that I’ve ran this year, people have donated over £31. This wouldn’t have happened without your support.
Now that this challenge has been completed I wanted to thank you once again for taking an interest in the goal of running 12 marathons in 12 months but most importantly helping me make more people aware of the conflict in the Eastern DRC and the severe impact that this has on women, children and men.
Many thanks and Happy Christmas,
Races completed this year:
My name is Chris Jackson, I’m 25 years old, I like running, I want to make a difference and I have decided to try and complete 12 marathons in 12 months to raise money from Amnesty International.
Whilst the work of Amnesty International may seem very remote to many of you, please just spare a few moments of your time to see why I have chosen to run for Amnesty international and why it is important to sponsor me and support the work of Amnesty International.
Whilst Amnesty International work across the globe, one region where they operate is of real interest to me. Last summer I embarked on an trip to Central Africa and I took the decision against everyone advice to visit the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC). The time I spent in the DRC has had an enormous impact on me, as the sheer enormity of the crisis and deprivation that I witnessed in and around Goma was simply unfathomable.
This has now led me to run the following races to raise money for Amnesty International:
January: Gloucester Marathon
Febraury: London Ultramarathon 50k! -
March: Duchy Marathon
June: South Downs Marathon
To give you a quick insight into the scale of the crisis in the DRC it is estimated that currently 45,000 people are dying each month because of the ongoing conflict and crisis in the region - to put this in perspective that is the same amount of people who take part in the London Marathon and yet this forgotten crisis receives little attention. Since the origins of the current conflict over 5 million people have died - that’s getting close to the population of London.
I’ve personally seen the refugee camps that are fashioned out of old grain sacks and that are build on recent lava flow (imagine pitching a tent on razor sharp magma), the signs which decorate the camps highlighting the issue of sexual assault which is prevalent in many of the camps, the child soldiers clutching an AK47 rather than a pen, and the frequent explosion in the distance of a grenade or the pop of a rile. It isn’t pleasant. These people need assistance and protection and that is why I am running for Amnesty International.
I appreciate that there are conflicts occurring around the globe, however, I am personally keen to help Amnesty International because they work tirelessly in this region to ensure that whilst this may be a forgotten, distant and remote for many of us in the UK. For those who live day to day in these areas Amnesty International provide the support, assistance and defence that they need. Because without the valuable work and support that Amnesty International provide then this would be an invisible crisis with the suffering becoming a way of life for millions.
For a bit more detail on the crisis please check out these articles that provide a more in-depth view
This is going to be a real challenge to complete 12 marathons in 12 months, but I think (hope) I can achieve it.
I really value the time that you have taken in coming to my justgiving page. If you could support me in any way I would really appreciate it.