Ballymena Santa Run raises £2,665 for a very worthy cause

Dessie Blackadder

Reporter:

Dessie Blackadder

Ballymena Runners’ annual ‘Santa Run’ has raised a magnificent £2,665 for the Friends of the Cancer Centre.

The club has a proud tradition of organising events throughout the year with the Santa Run probably being the most high profile.

A spokesperson said: “The aim is to promote the club, to be inclusive, and to give something back to society through our charity fundraising.

“The club also has a proven track record of commitment to promoting the social and health benefits of running to our local community through our nine week "Cosy Sofa to 5K programme".

“This work has allowed us to build relationships with other organisation and links in with our charity work.

“Our main charity events throughout the year are the New Year’s Day ‘Race Over The Glens’ at Glenariff, the Ballymena Belles Womens 5 mile race, our Club ‘naked run’ at the Ecos Centre, the Fairhill 5 Mile Race, our ‘Jingle All The Way’ partnership with the NI Hospice, and of course our ‘Santa Run’

Ballymena Runners members Jim and Catherine Stewart took on the responsibility of organising this year’s ‘Santa Run’ to raise money for the Friends for the Cancer Centre.

Dozens of runners, along with their friends and families, took to the streets just before Christmas dressed as Santa. There was the usual stop off points at the Braid for a photo shoot with the mayor of Mid & East Antrim Council, and our traditional visit to the Tower Centre to sing carols with the Ballymena Chamber Orchestra, then finishing up in the Adair Arms Hotel for refreshments.

This year’s charity is the Friends of the Cancer Centre, who have a long and proud history of helping local cancer patients across Northern Ireland. Based at the heart of the Cancer Centre at Belfast City Hospital, the charity funds life-saving and life-changing projects that make a real and lasting difference to the lives of thousands of local people affected by cancer.

In the last year alone, Friends of the Cancer Centre has put £1.2 million back into local cancer services. Their work focuses on three key areas - patient care, patient comfort and research – all supporting the services provided by the Health Service.

Ballymena Runners were delighted that a number of local business, shops and bars, worked with us to support our fundraising. Our Santa runners visited the business as part of the run to pick up the collection tins. If you would like to find out about Ballymena Runners please contact one of the club officers or email ballymenarunners@hotmail.com

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