Taking on the gruelling 26.2 miles of the London Marathon is not for the weak hearted. Yet in the morning of 22nd April, over 40,000 will gather on the busy start-line in Blackheath, before running their way across London to the finish line in the shadow of Buckingham Palace.
Each year a group tackle the feat on behalf of Oasis Community Partnerships, and this month three members of Oasis Community Learning will be amongst their number running the Marathon to raise money for Oasis’s transformational work across the country. Oasis Community Learning’s CEO John Murphy, Regional Director Philip Beaumont, and Oasis Academy South Bank’s Head of Drama Rhys King.
Oasis Community Partnerships serves 36 communities across the country, with hundreds of volunteers, activists and professionals delivering projects that support tens of thousands of people.
Food banks, debt advice services, city farms, cooking sessions, language classes, craft shops, local libraries, sports clubs, parent and toddler groups, advice centres, housing initiatives, prison outreach, and youth violence prevention projects, are just some of the things Oasis Community Partnerships do to support families and local people.
In a break from their training, we asked each of them what is motivating them to run for Oasis.
“Since joining Oasis Community Learning, I have seen first-hand the truly transformational work of Oasis Community Partnerships,” says John.
“The staff and volunteers create safe spaces and new opportunities for people that bring communities together, places where everyone is included and encouraged to make a contribution. Any donation, however big or small, will make a big difference to furthering their inspiring work.”
For Rhys the Marathon is an opportunity to tell others about the charity’s work.
“I am running to bring awareness to the staggering work of the Oasis charity, which strives to enhance and improve the lives of our most vulnerable children and people within our communities.”
“Oasis’s commitment to inclusion inspires me. At a time when we are so divided and hatred is such a common currency in our day-to-day lives, I have found myself impassioned to start fighting - start doing my bit to help Oasis' wider cause to bridge the gaps in our society and join together against poverty and discrimination.”
And for Philip it’s about Oasis’s service to those in crisis.
“At its core, Oasis’s work is to give hope and purpose to people when they are at their lowest ebb, when they need that helping hand.”
“For thousands of people Oasis is a beacon, and I hope our fundraising will help them serve even more people.”
If you are in London on the 22nd, please do look out for all of those running on behalf of Oasis – there will be Oasis cheerers at the Cutty Sark (mile 6), Tooley Street (mile 12), and the Monument (mile 22).
And if you would like to lend your support to our runners and Oasis Community Partnerships with a donation, you can visit John’s fundraising page, Philip’s fundraising page, and Rhys’s fundraising page here.