The White Helmets - Saving lives under fire
On the 30th October 2016 I will be running the Dublin Marathon for the White Helmets in Syria. Inspired by the family and friends that have marathoned before me, I decided to dust off my trainers and put my legs to the test.
I manged 18.3 miles in my training run yesterday, so I can promise you two things. Firstly, I will never again question whether spending a tenner on Britney's greatest hits was a good idea. The women is a goddess who got me through mile 15. Secondly, if I stick to my training plan, it looks like I have a good chance of making it the full 26.2 miles.
I'd like to run in support of The White Helmets, or Syrian Civil Defence. The White Helmets are volunteer search and rescue workers. They are ordinary Syrians; carpenters, pharmacists, nurses, teachers, students and doctors, who have chosen to stay in Syria and provide humanitarian relief after every bombing. In a place where public services no longer function these unarmed volunteers risk their lives to help anyone in need - regardless of their religion or political views. They do this knowing they are undertaking the most dangerous work in the world, simply because they believe it is the right thing to do.
In the face of the greatest human cruelty (the Syrian Air force are regularly using barrel bombs and chemical weapons both of which have been banned by the UN Security Council due to the extent of human suffering they cause), the White Helmets have chosen to respond with unparalleled bravery and compassion. So far they have saved 60 000 lives.
The money donated here will be used buy search and rescue equipment and also to support White Helmet volunteers if they become injured during their work.
For more information about the cause that you will be donating to, please refer to the White Helmets' webpage at www.whitehelmets.org. You can also sign a petition that will be sent to the UN Security Council to demand action to stop the use of barrel bombs and chemical weapons in Syria.