A mum whose children attended one of our Children & young people after their dad died is running the London Marathon – to help 50 other youngsters get the same support.
Noreen McKechnie from Ashford will take on the famous run on April 22 to raise £6,000 for us, to pay for two more bereavement weekends.
Noreen’s children Cameron, 12 and Alexander, 9, came on one of our weekends in autumn 2017 and had the opportunity to meet others who also been left bereaved after a parent had died. Their dad died suddenly in November 2016 and it was a neighbour of theirs who told them about us and let them know how we can help.
We run 10 bereavement weekends (non-residential) every year, each costing £3,000 each and Noreen’s fundraising will pay for two, ensuring 50 young people aged from 6-16 have the same opportunity for support that her sons did.
Noreen, founder and director of Ashford-based recruitment consultancy Diamond Search Recruitment, said: “The boys had so much help from school but what they lacked was speaking to other children this had happened to – they felt completely alone in that. The weekend gave them this vital opportunity and made such a difference.
“They loved it – the sessions they took part in have made a huge difference to how they have handled such a traumatic experience in their young lives.
“They created a memory box, things to put in it and learnt many ways to cope with their grief including how to handle anger, which some children have when they have lost a parent.”
Along with the marathon, Noreen is also holding a raffle which she will be running on her LinkedIn and Facebook pages. Many of her clients and business associates have donated generous prizes including a luxury spa day, afternoon tea, haircut and toys…with many more to come.
Asked how her training is going, Noreen said: “It’s been quite tough to fit it in around the children and work but I’ll be OK on the day and I’m looking forward to it!”
Holding on Letting Go Chief Executive Officer Caroline Ford, said: “Noreen’s fundraising efforts are very much appreciated by us and the potential to help 50 young people is amazing.
“We hope lots of people give her the support she deserves to reach her £6,000 goal and wish her the best of luck on marathon day!”
If you’d like to donate a prize for the raffle or buy £1 tickets, please contact Noreen via email on firstname.lastname@example.org.
To sponsor her, visit her Virgin Money Giving page.