Saturday, 13 March 2010

Running for Autism

One of the greatest benefits of running this blog has been the opportunity to meet all sorts of people I might not have encountered otherwise.  A short while ago, I received a couple of comments from a friendly blogger called “Revivor” and when I popped over to his blog, I saw that he was organising a four day run from Clapham to Brighton to raise money for the charity CASPA (Children on the Autistic Spectrum Parents’ Association)

Naturally I was intrigued and so I contacted him straight away and we decided to meet up and chat about his noble adventure.

Ivor Reveley
Ivor Reveley (check out the “Gotta Run” t-shirt)

On whether he has done such a thing before…

Two years ago, on his fiftieth birthday, Ivor and a team of runners ran from Romford to Orpington.  They ran 50kms over 50 hours to raise money for 50 young people with autism.  Ivor broke that down for me and explained that it is not as impossible as it sounds (bearing in mind that I walk a 5km fun run once a year): you run for two to three hours a day over three days and cover about 20 kilometres a day.  It is not easy but it is possible!

They raised £8,500 on that occasion which meant that their charity CASPA was able to obtain viability and get the real start that it required.  This is so important, as Ivor explains, because it meant that the charity could remain a stable entity in the lives of the children and families it serves.

CASPA2

On why he was raising money for CASPA?

Ivor's sixteen-year-old son has autism.  After being a charity trustee for fifteen to twenty years, Ivor realised that he had the skill necessary to make a difference in the lives of other children with autism and he decided to get involved with CASPA.

On what CASPA is and what they do...

Ivor is the chair and trustee of the charity.  They started off as an informal parents’ association in 2002 and formally registered the charity in 2005.  As a charity, they run events and workshops for young people with autism such as:

  • Brighton Beach kid’s days out
  • Youth Club on a Friday night
  • A residential week long summer camp
  • Independent Living Workshops (which are sponsored by the LDA)

They have received brilliant feedback from the children who say it is a safe environment for them to have fun, free from bullying or other such concerns.

CASPA1

On making the runs interesting…

After completing A-levels in Economics, Geography and Maths, Ivor went on to study Economics at university. An avid map lover, Ivor is now using his Geography and Maths skills again as he plans the most historical and geographically interesting routes through cathedrals and up high streets.  The idea is for the runners to enjoy these events and to see and learn about the places they run through.

On this year’s event…

Date: 30 April – 3 May 2010.
Route: Clapham Common to Brighton Beach (route details)

Ivor hopes to do events like this every even year and this year they will be doing a four day run from Clapham to Brighton.  Ivor is keeping a log of all of the training and organising of the event in his blog Four Days Running.

A half marathon is 21km and these runners will be doing more than that each day as they will run from about 2.30pm to 5pm every day for four days.

Friends, family and supporters will be able to meet up with the runners every evening as pub nights are being organised on Facebook and the hotels that the group is staying in is published on the site (stay on route).

This is not a public run but anyone interested in joining the run can contact Ivor at the site to get involved.  They have a photographer taking part this year so expect great photos!

On how YOU can help…

You can donate money using the button above.  That will take you to the Just Giving site where the money will go straight to the charity and won’t touch anyone’s hands.

But don’t worry, there are lots of other ways to help too:

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17 comments

  1. This is a wonderful cause. I have a friend that has two children with autism. I actually met him online blogging. He will love this.

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  2. Sounds like a great activity! Looking forward for the pictures from the Photographers!

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  3. my brother was born autistic. he is now 42 years old. we love him and is the central point of our family. articles/write-ups like this are really heart-warming. i shall bookmark this & show it to my parents who are also active members of the autism society of the philippines.

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  4. Emm,

    My hat is off to you for your involvement and support, especially spreading the word. I have to admit that I have not been touched personally by autism. Cancer, heart disease, Parkinson's Disease - they've all touched my family, so I know how a serious health problem can affect a family.

    The work of non-profit organizations are critical to helping families deal with devastating disease, so I try to help where I can.

    You may remember me from my other blog (www.UltimateBloggingToolkit.com), but I would like to introduce my newest project here in the U.S. that helps non-profit organizations with marketing tips, tricks, and resources and helps them open new revenue channels.

    www.ClickBuyHelp.org

    On my site I try to share helpful ideas from my eight years on a school board, a board member of a children's summer camp, and with our education foundation. I hope you and your readers find it useful.

    Best wishes.

    Dave

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  5. Ivor and his charity crew are doing a great job in helping autistic kids. Well done to yourself for giving Ivor such a big platform via Emm in London to put over the good work and upcoming event the charity is doing. Happy running Ivor and I hope the buckets get full.

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  6. I have worked with Autistic children. This is a wonderful event for such agreat cause!

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  7. I think it's amazing when people do things like this, volunteering for a good cause. Keep it up humanity!

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  8. Thanks for sharing this great post on an excellent way to raise money for those who suffer from autism.

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  9. Great post. Ivor is giving back and encouraging others to help, which is wonderful. I wish him the best.

    Thanks for visiting my blog cluelessinboston and in effect, showing me the way to your blog. Cheers.

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  10. I would imagine Ivor really appreciates you putting the word out via your blog. This will benefit all who participate and those who suffer with autism combined. Nice post.

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  11. Wonderful post Emm...very inspsiring! Fantastic read!
    Kiki~

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  12. @ Lauren: Thank you for showing him!

    @ VanillaSeven: Me too! Perhaps I will also try meet them en route...

    @ Mama Mia: That is great, thank you! I would love to learn more about your brother one day and how he fairs as an adult.

    @ Dave: That sounds really interesting... I have contacted you through your blog for more info.

    @ Martyn: Thank you! I hope he makes some good money too.

    @ Jill C: Thank you so much for your kind comment!

    @ Patty: I totally agree with you!

    @ Can Diet Help Autism: Thank you.

    @ Clueless in Boston: Thank you and it is a pleasure!

    @ Carolyn: Thank you - it was great meeting up with another blogger too.

    @ Kiki: Thank you!

    @ Betty: It is a great cause indeed.

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  13. thanks for all your comments and to Mandy for taking the initiative - we will be up and running on Facebook soon to complement the blog and then a "warts and all" service on Twitter will be operating during the run!! Pictures of the run will be available soon after.
    http://fourdaysrunning.blogspot.com/ to find out more and support

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  14. Hi Emm - great to see Ivor getting this much needed publicity - it's a very worthy cause - thanks for doing this!

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  15. @ Revivor: Thanks for popping by - how are your preparations going??

    @ Magicdarts: Hiya! It is a pleasure - I knew the second he first commented on my blog that we had to meet up and do this.

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  16. Fund raising activity for a good cause is really a good thing to do. That’s a great post Emm! To be honest I’m not really familiar with autism, history behind it and how it can be cure. All I know that it’s a mental disorder of a child.

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