Staff take on sun-soaked Birmingham 10K in aid of double charity target

While many of us were sitting back and soaking up the rays at the weekend, 15 members of our team were pounding the streets of Birmingham in aid of charity.

Jack James, Emily Hassell, Jo Purser, Rajbir Singh, Alex Cook, Ally Smith, Ross Holland, Jamie Harland, Alice Bennett, Dina O’Brien, Mark Winter, Rachel Smith, Jamal Yafai, Asiah Faraz and Jenny Cockeram all took part in the Birmingham 10K on Sunday (May 6).

Seven members of staff from our tax team ran on behalf of DEBRA and the remainder of the runners completed the course in aid of mental health charity, Mind. Collectively, they’ve set themselves the challenge of raising £4,000 and it’s a target they’re well on track to meet, with the last balance total standing at £3,974.62.

There were all sorts of reasons why the Team OR runners were spurred on to take on the Birmingham 10K, ranging from the fact some of them wanted to use it as springboard to get back into exercise and running again, supporting their colleagues and having fun in aid of charity, to raising money for DEBRA in support of Jenny’s four-year-old son, Jamie.

“Jamie suffers from a severe form of Recessive Dystrophic Epidermolysis Bullosa, which is one of the worst forms of EB. As well as deformity, he has a high chance of developing squamous cell carcinoma (aggressive skin cancer) before he reaches adulthood,” explains Jenny.

“He also suffers from corneal abrasions, making his eyes so hypersensitive to light, that all curtains and blinds have to be closed for a day or so and he plays in the dark, as if blind, with his eyes tightly shut.

“DEBRA helps support people, just like Jamie, who have skin conditions, such as EB, which there’s currently no cure for. The money we’ve raised and are continuing to raise at present, will enable the charity to continue carrying out the invaluable research that’s needed to help find a cure for EB.”

Despite the scorching heat, which reached temperatures of 23 to 25°C, all of the 15 runners managed to complete the race, with times ranging between 00:51:44 and 01:15:46. Here’s how some of them found it:

“It was very hot, so I’m extremely proud of the guys and girls for running in that heat,” – Jack James, who organised the Team OR runners and ran in support of Mind due to some people who are close to him being affected by mental health issues.

It was fun but very hot and I’m glad I did it,” – Ross Holland.

“It was far too hot, but the great atmosphere got us through,” – Dina O’Brien.

Being the kind-hearted bunch that we are, it’s not just the runners within our company who’ve helped raise almost £4,000 for DEBRA and Mind. We held a dress-down day on May 4 and James Read, who was unable to make the Birmingham 10K, had his hair shaved off, raising £235 for his hair-raising efforts in the process.

If you’d like to help our Birmingham 10K champions meet, or even exceed, their £4,000 target, head over to where you can make a donation online.

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