Taking part in a marathon has always been on the to-do list for Westminster based Tim Verheyden, and this year the researcher will get his chance, as he lines up at the start to run the iconic London Marathon for charity, Chain of Hope.
Tim, 26, who got the running bug after moving to London last year, is preparing to take on the gruelling 26.2 mile distance to raise money to support the charity’s work in developing and war-torn countries.
Over the last 20 years Chain of Hope has been bringing life-saving heart treatments to children through teams of pioneering medical professionals who volunteer their time to treat children and conduct training programmes for local medical staff. The charity also runs an emergency International Child Referral Programme, flying children for urgent treatment to partner centres across the UK, Europe and Bangalore.
Tim has a very special reason for supporting the charity’s work. He said: “The cause of mending little hearts is especially dear to me as my girlfriend received life-saving heart surgery shortly after being born so I knew if I was to run it, it would be for a charity in this field. Then fate intervened and I was fortunate enough to attend the Chain of Hope Gala Ball this year together with my colleagues from Arabesque and my girlfriend. Seeing all the doctors and nurses up on stage and hearing directly from one of the children whose lives were saved, I got truly inspired. As I was already running very regularly, running the marathon for Chain of Hope seemed like the perfect way for me to do my small part.
“The annual marathon stands out as the ultimate event for runners living and working in London – even more so because it’s very hard to secure a starting number. I am therefore eternally grateful to Chain of Hope for giving me the opportunity to run and support them in this way.”
Training has already begun for Tim as he ran his first half marathon on 19th February at Hampton Court.
Tim will be one of 35,000 other runners heading to the start line on Sunday 23rd April 2017 and will also be part of a team of seven runners who form ‘Team Chain of Hope.’ He is hoping to raise more than £2,500 for the charity.
To support Tim please visit www.justgiving.com/fundraising/timverheyden