“I am NEVER doing that again!” she cried as she limped her way over to the non-alcoholic beer tent. Four hours and 57 minutes of activity later, she’d finished her first and only marathon.
That didn’t last long. The silly rabbit then told one of her clients, a national charity, about the Yorkshire Marathon. She soon found herself signing up for the London Marathon six months later.
A year passed. Another five months. Then she ran her way down the River Thames, missing her family at every agreed spot because she’d grossly miscalculated how far she was from Hampton Court Palace. A month later, she stood in the rain in Peterborough, waiting for them to cancel the Great Eastern Run.
Peeved, she ran the Yorkshire Marathon the week after. A new personal best.
Perhaps I’m built for this running lark. Why else would I agree to run another one? Of the four I’ve attempted, I can safely say the Yorkshire Marathon is my absolute favourite. Likewise, Deafblind UK, for whom I ran the London Marathon in 2018, is one of my favourite charities.
If you’re not familiar with them, they’re a members-only charity, focusing on improving the day-to-day lives of those with dual sensory loss. They currently support around 4,000 people across the UK, but the number of deafblind people in the UK is closer to 400,000.
For this reason, every penny counts. They’re helping more and more people every day with phone lines, home visits, day trips and assisted housing. It was a huge privilege to raise £1,500 for them back in 2018. So, how exactly did I do this?
‘Dares for Donations’
Let’s face it. People can be pretty grumpy when it comes to charidee. That’s why I came up with the ‘Dares for Donations’ concept. I would offer people the chance to give me a ‘dare’ – usually some kind of public humiliation – which I would then film and publish. All they needed to do in exchange was donate.
Of course, I set some ground rules. No nudity or anything offensive, for example. However, that didn’t stop the donors from being creative…
…like the time I had to apply makeup like a two-year-old.
N.B. I was working at an agency when all of these were going on, hence the random office and laughter.
…or the time I dressed up like Scary Spice.
I had no Scary Spice clothes. One carefully adjusted scarf was all I had.
…or the time I tried the ‘Bruce Bogtrotter Challenge’.
Harder than it looks.
…or the time I ate the world’s hottest chilli pepper.
Not as hard as it looks…at first. Violent vomiting later.
…or the time I sang The Circle of Life in Co-op.
The cashier really wanted to know if I wanted to buy anything.
…or the time I went viral on LinkedIn.
This little gem reached 90,000 views. Without it, I wouldn’t have the totally random LinkedIn following I have today. If anybody needs a builder, I’m connected to thousands.
Next stop: Yorkshire Marathon for Deafblind UK, 18th October 2020
Thankfully, all this publicity meant we reached the target within six weeks. There were also newspaper articles and radio interviews, not to mention the hottest London Marathon on record!
Luckily, the Yorkshire Marathon is in October. In the North. Plus, the fundraising target is only £500 for this one.
Will you donate without expecting me to hand over my dignity? We’ll find out.