Tuesday, 5 March 2024
Tuesday, 5 March 2024

Feed the Minds: How Serena is preparing for the London marathon

In this blog, Serena shares how she is preparing herself for the London marathon despite her busy schedule.  

My name is Serena. I’m the Programme Funding Officer at Feed the Minds, and I’m training to run my first marathon to raise funds for Feed the Minds.

How is my training going?

The marathon is now just 4 weeks away, which means training is heating up! I’ve hit my longest distance yet at 19 miles and gained a whole new appreciation for the phrase ‘what doesn’t kill you makes you stronger’.

Jokes aside, I am grateful to have enjoyed a fairly straightforward training cycle, with no major illness or injury to report. Of course, not everyone would choose to be at the peak of marathon training during two heatwaves and in the middle of deadline season, but it’s all so worth it. 

Whenever training feels hard, I think of women like Marie, who lives in Sierra Leone.

Feed the Minds: How Serena is preparing for the London marathon
Women in Sierra Leone holding a cooperative meeting to discuss their farming activities and savings projects.

As the sole provider for her family of 5, Marie worked relentlessly hard to grow crops to feed her family. Meeting their basic needs was a daily struggle, and Marie explained to our local partners that she couldn’t understand the purpose of educating women, because all that mattered was what she harvested, and whether her family was fed.

Feed the Minds worked with a local partner in Sierra Leone to deliver agricultural skills training to 1,000 women, including Marie, and supported the establishment of 20 cooperatives to support collective farming and savings. Marie told our partners that the training enabled her to produce more yield and increase her income. Not only this, but she has also become the first female cooperative secretary in the village, and has been inspired to spearhead a local women’s literacy campaign.

She explained:

“Above all, I have realised and appreciated that education is valuable for all children and that girls need encouragement and support.”

Marie is a real testament to the power of education, showing how this project helped not just her, but her daughters, and the daughters of the women Marie reaches through her campaign.

When I think of that incredible impact, every step of my training feels worth it.

How is the fundraising going?

I am delighted to share that we have not only reached the fundraising target of £1,500, but we’ve also surpassed it altogether! We have now raised £1,922 toward Feed the Minds’ life-changing education projects. 

I feel absolutely blown away by the generosity of my friends, family, loved ones and strangers, and am so heartened to know that so many people out there share our passion for reaching and uplifting marginalised communities through education.

When I first signed up for the marathon, I was recommended to set a fundraising target of £2,000, but I wasn’t brave enough. Now that I’ve seen the incredible support that is out there, I am daring to dream big. My biggest wish now is to not just reach £2,000, but surpass it altogether! 

Please donate here if you’d like to help make this dream a reality today.

Thank you.

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