£3,000 for disability charity

Mother and daughter Gillian (left) and Senga Craig present The Cedar Foundation with �3,000 raised through Gillian's participation in the 'Born 2 Run' 'Run Forest Run' series.
Mother and daughter Gillian (left) and Senga Craig present The Cedar Foundation with �3,000 raised through Gillian's participation in the 'Born 2 Run' 'Run Forest Run' series.

Magheramorne woman Gillian Craig has raised £3,000 for The Cedar Foundation charity after completing a series of eight races.

Not only did Gillian, who suffers from cerebral palsy, complete the tough challenge, she won an award for the Most Inspirational Runner.

Gillian, a receptionist at Meadowbridge Surgery in Whitehead too part in the gruelling ‘Born 2 Run’, ‘Run Forest Run’ series.

Gillian, whose condition affects her lower limbs, balance and co-ordination completed all of the races, which took place this winter in forest locations throughout Northern Ireland including Tollymore Forest Park, Antrim Castle Gardens and Kilbroney Forest Park.

After watching her family take part in local park runs Gillian wondered why she was missing out and decided to give it a go herself.

She said: “I never ever thought I would be able to run any distance, everything about running is a challenge for me, but I give it all I’ve got and if I have to crawl over the finish line I will. You have to believe in yourself and that’s what I would say to anyone whether living with a disability or not. Believe in yourself and follow your dreams and ambitions. The Cedar Foundation is a cause close to my heart and because of the work they do to support local people with disabilities in the community and workplace. I am delighted to have raised so much money. The support from the local community has been unbelievable. I want to say a huge thank you from the bottom of my heart to everyone who sponsored me to raise the £3,000.”

Her mum Senga added: “The difference in Gillian since she has begun running is unbelievable. Before she wouldn’t have gone anywhere on her own. Now if her dad or I are busy, she will happily go to the Park Run on a Saturday morning by herself. Everyone knows her there and she won’t miss a race. She has had such a confidence boost.”

The Cedar Foundation provides services across Northern Ireland supporting children and adults with disability, autism and brain injury to live the lives they choose. The charity supports over 2000 individuals and families. Services include short breaks.for children and families.

, activity programmes for young people, transitions services, employment and training programmes, supported living, home based support and residential services for adults.

Anne Woods, Head of Community Services at The Cedar Foundation commented “With the money Gillian has raised Cedar will be able to help more individuals and families across Northern Ireland to fulfil their ambitions, whether those ambitions be related to work, social or housing. Our range of services ensure that people living with brain injury, disability or autism make the most from their own personal situation. Gillian is an inspiration to everyone, we are delighted to have her support and thank everyone who sponsored her along her fundraising journey.”

For more information on Cedar’s services or if you would like to take on a fundraising challenge of your own visit www.cedar-foundation.org or call 9066 6188 After completing over 50 park runs she decided to do something extra and with the support of her family and signed up to the Run Forest Run challenge.

She decided to raise funds for local charity The Cedar Foundation, raising an amazing total of £3,000 and has also now become a member of Larne Athletics Club.

She commented “I never ever thought I would be able to run any distance, everything about running is a challenge for me, but I give it all I’ve got and if I have to crawl over the finish line I will.

You have to believe in yourself and that’s what I would say to anyone whether living with a disability or not. Believe in yourself and follow your dreams and ambitions. The Cedar Foundation are a cause close to my heart and because of the work they do to support local people with disabilities in the community and workplace. I am delighted to have raised so much money, the support from the local community has been unbelievable, I want to say a huge thank you from the bottom of my heart to everyone who sponsored me to raise the £3,000”

Gillian’s family including her mum, dad, brother and sister-in-law and her good friend Catherine Todd also took part in the Run Forest Run series by her side. Her mum Senga commented “The difference in Gillian since she has begun running is unbelievable. Before she wouldn’t have gone anywhere on her own, now if her dad or I are busy she will happily go to the Park Run on a Saturday morning by herself, everyone knows her there and she won’t miss a race. She has had such a confidence boost.”

The Cedar Foundation is a local charity that provides services across Northern Ireland supporting children and adults with disability, autism and brain injury. They have a large staff team supporting over 2000 individuals and families. Services include employment and training programmes, supported living, home based support and residential services for adults.

Anne Woods, Head of Community Services at The Cedar Foundation commented “With the money Gillian has raised Cedar will be able to help more individuals and families across Northern Ireland to fulfil their ambitions, whether those ambitions be related to work, social or housing. Our range of services ensure that people living with brain injury, disability or autism make the most from their own personal situation. Gillian is an inspiration to everyone, we are delighted to have her support and thank everyone who sponsored her along her fundraising journey.”

For more information on Cedar’s services or if you would like to take on a fundraising challenge of your own visit www.cedar-foundation.org or call 9066 6188