I’m Gennie Dearman, Chief Operating Officer at EDT, and I’m here to share my fundraising story. Whether it’s climbing Mount Everest or hosting a bake-sale, most of us have donated to or taken part in fundraising at some point in our lives. With so many fantastic charities and non-profit organisations in the UK, there are lots of great reasons to get involved in fundraising. Everyone has their own story about which reasons mean the most to them, and this is mine...
#1 – In memory
My ‘number 1’ driver to apply for the London Marathon in 2020 was my mum. The big day fell on the date she went onto her ‘next big adventure’ in 1996, and the idea of running 26.2 miles became a positive way I could remember her. When the London Marathon was moved to October, my motivation moved out temporarily. It had to be on a day that meant something to her – which is why I decided to run my own and my first marathon – which I’m calling ‘Run for Mum’ on what would have been her 75th birthday, 7th March 2021.
#2 – Health and wellbeing
Being diagnosed with having had a small stroke in September 2020 was a bit of a wake-up call. I saw this as an opportunity to start improving my health and managing my stress levels, and I have seen benefits to my mental health as well. Just having a bit of ‘me’ time, getting out and pounding the pavements (sometimes at a fairly decent speed, sometimes with walking breaks and occasionally through ice or mud) has helped me to stay positive during lockdown.
#3 – The challenge
Without the crowds and the atmosphere, I know that the mental challenge of completing the marathon will be harder than the physical one, but in a weird way it is one I am looking forward to. By going so far out of my comfort zone (26.2 miles out, to be precise!) this whole journey will be one of testing my resilience in a different way, learning more about ‘me’, and an opportunity for personal growth.
#4 – To raise money for charity.
Charities across the UK have had to rethink how they operate so they can continue supporting their beneficiaries during COVID-19. All of us have our own challenges to deal with right now, meaning charities are receiving less funding at a time when vulnerable people need them most. The money I plan to raise from my marathon will help two amazing charities very close to my heart. Here’s how my target of £1000 can help to make a difference:
"EDT is an educational charity on a mission to connect young people with industry and inspiring STEM* futures. £1000 could provide bursaries for 20 young people from disadvantaged backgrounds to take part in a 3-day virtual STEM course. Equally, it could provide an activity-filled STEM Experience Day for a whole class. £1000 could help us to provide detailed CV guidance to young people, create exciting new STEM content, or even organise virtual tours of colleges, universities and workplaces.”- Julie Feest, Chief Executive of EDT. *Science, Technology, Engineering & Maths
Heathrow Community Trust
“The pandemic has had a huge toll on every single local group that we are supporting, but even a relatively small amount of funding can make a dramatic difference. For example, £1100 to Sight for Surrey enabled them to quickly make available COVID-19 guidance in British Sign Language for their deaf and hard of hearing beneficiaries. £1000 to Beat Routes helped them to move all their music workshops and accredited training online. £1397 to Colnbrook Village hall enabled them to keep going through lockdown.”- Dr Beccy Bowden, Chief Executive of the Heathrow Community Trust
You can follow and support Gennie’s “Run for Mum” fundraiser here. If you feel inspired to do some fundraising yourself, check out our Fundraiser Support Pack or contact us at EDTvolunteers@etrust.org.uk