Showing posts from 2009

Liverpool Santa Dash 2009

A great day, and a great result. The team all turned up, and enjoyed themselves, and apart from a sudden downpour, the weather was kind to us. Some of us took the fun-run more seriously than others, and one of our team actually ran it twice, but the emphasis was definitely on fun. More importantly, we've raised loads of money for midwifery training and safe motherhood projects in Shyira, Rwanda. Before the event, we'd hoped for about £1000 between us all, but we've already surpassed that from just 5 or 6 of the team, so we're hopeful of getting at least £1500 and maybe even £2000 when all the money is collected. Twelve of the team (and Molly the border collie) are pictured above, before the start. The lure of a hot coffee after the finish was too strong for three of the team, so the 'after' photo has only nine of the team posing near the Victoria monument. A big thank you to everyone who supported us by sponsoring us, and thanks to Jeb Smith photograp

Liverpool Santa Dash 2009

As featured in the Formby Times ! Pete Morgan and some of the team in preparation for the Liverpool Santa Dash. It's back, and it's bigger and better than ever - the Liverpool Santa Dash. What's more, Shyira Trust has AT LEAST 12 supporters taking part - to raise funds for Midwifery and Maternity projects in Shyira, Rwanda (click here for details). Please support one of our team members by clicking a link below, or support the whole team, by clicking the following link: Team Rwanda The whole team .... Jane Morgan Cheryl Moran Zoe Robertson Lilian Brignull Judith Hulse Peter Morgan John Shaw Sally Williams Stewart Brignull Steve Hulse Martin Baxter Donna Robinson Mike Robinson (More to follow) .... would like to thank you for your support Whether you support the whole team, or one of the team members, you can be assured that every penny received by Shyira Trust goes to the project it was intended for. No rents, no salaries, no overheads - jus

September triple-header

Typical - you wait for weeks, then 3 events come together! First, on Wednesday the 9th, the final race of the Mystery 5k series. Always a fast and furious affair, I somehow contrived to miss the start, so was running against the clock rather than similar-standard runners. In the circumstances, a time of 20:52 was quite respectable - just 6 seconds slower than last time, when I had opponents to run with, and to race against. Then, on Sunday the 13th, an altogether different affair - the Lake Vyrnwy half marathon, in North Wales (pictured left, photo courtesy of Mick Hall Photos ). With over 1200 runners, this was a high-class race, with runners coming from all over the country. I had my best race of the year, and my best half-marathon for many years, finishing in 144th position (out of 1242), in a time of 1:31:47 - exactly 7min per mile pace. Of course, the purpose of this blog is not just about the running. It's about raising awareness of Shyira Trust, and about raising funds for m

Dancing 4 Rwanda !

See more here !

Birchwood 10k

This was another opportunity to raise awareness, rather than raise funds. Of course, if you want to help us in our fund-raising efforts, you're more than welcome, but more of that later. From less than 100 runners in my last race, this was a chance to get the running 4 rwanda name in front of up to 1000 runners. If only 3% of the runners noticed the web address, and only 3% of those visited the web-site, then that's 1 extra reader. If you are that 1 extra reader, then thank you for visiting, and thanks for reading this far. Please take a few minutes to find out a little about the site by reading some of the entries, and looking at FAQs. If you want to join us, or find out a little bit more about us, please follow the Contact me link. If you would like to make a donation, no matter how big or small, there is an appeal open at . Please feel free to make an online donation, or if you would rather send a cheque, please use the 'Contact me' lin

Mystery 5k

It'a August, and I'm racing again. As ever, it was a fast and furious 5k, with no time to catch your breath. I managed a half-respectable 20:46, which I am quite pleased about in the circumstances. But this site is not a Running site. The most important part of running 4 rwanda is not the 'running' part, but the 'rwanda' part. The only reason for this site, as explained elsewhere, is to raise awareness of fund-raising projects to raise funds for Shyira Trust, in particular for Maternity services, Safe Motherhood and Midwifery training. I know times are hard - I am out of work myself - but if you feel you would like to make a donation, no matter how big or small, please go to my fund-raising page at and make an online donation. If you would prefer to make a donation by cheque, or would like to know more about Shyira Trust, please use the 'Contact me' link above, and I'll tell you more. Please be assured that every penny

Mystery 5k

Only just recovering from illness, so will miss this. Will race again in August

Windermere Marathon - one month on

I spoke too soon - I came down with a chest infection, and missed almost 3 weeks of running, so am only just getting back to running. After my last post, I had a couple more runs - one on Tuesday and one on Thursday, but the last one was a real struggle, and I didn't run again until yesterday. I even had blood tests, and got sent for a Chest x-ray, but there was nothing too serious, so after 2 courses of antibiotics, got the all clear. Hopefully, if I take it easy over the next couple of weeks, I should be back to decent training, and possibly racing within a few weeks. I have now closed the fundraising - a grand total of £417 was raised which has gone towards midwifery training, midwife support and safe motherhood projects in Shyira, Rwanda. Thanks to everyone who sponsored me - your generosity is appreciated, and has helped countless women and children unable to help themselves.

Mystery 5k

Second of 5-race series, but suffering from illness, so will miss this one as well

Windermere Marathon - one week on

So far, so good - I've started running again, with no ill effects. I had a few days rest, and started running again on Friday, and have been out again today. I'll try to get our every other day, but run very easily for the next couple of weeks, just to recover fully, before starting serious training or racing again. On a fund-raising note, it looks like I may get to about £400 - the latest figure will be updated via a Twitter update on the right of the screen.

Windermere Marathon - the day after

Ow, ow, ow, ow, ow - I wish I lived in a bungalow ! If I thought it hurt yesterday, it hurts even worse today - especially going up and down stairs ! The picture on the left shows me going through Hawkshead, at about the 4 mile mark. At this point I felt comfortable, although I had probably started too fast - I was to suffer later ! I intended to run at 8 min per mile, which would have given be a finishing time of about 3 hrs 30 min. My first 2 or 3 miles were quicker than this, whereas I had intende d to start more slowly. In fact, most of the first half was run faster than target pace, but then when I did slow, I slowed with a vengeance, and I was counting off the last 5 or 6 miles. As it happened, the final time of 3:38 was quite reasonable, and I didn't feel too bad at the end (see right). If someone had suggested 3 months ago that I could run that time over that course, I would have laughed. Maybe I could do a half decent time over an easier course, and then maybe I'll co

Windermere Marathon - almost there

All the training's done (almost), and there's less than a week to go, so I'm getting a bit nervous. I haven't done a marathon since the mid-Nineties, so how hard can it be ? I'm sure it will be OK on the day, but I won't be making any rash predictions, other than the fact that I will get round it, even if I have to walk. I'm sure it won't come to that, but there's a lot riding on it, so I'll get round no matter what it takes. Sponsorship currently stands at over £200, which will go a long way in Rwanda, but I'm hoping to get about double that before the week is out. See the Twitter feed on the right for the latest situation. As always, all money raised will go to Midwifery, Maternity and Safe Motherhood projects in Rwanda. We are committed to raising £10000 over the next 4 years, to pay for the training of the next midwife. The maternity extension will cost over £20000, but at the other end of the scale, £15 will pay for a Caesarean section,

Mystery 5k

First of a 5-race series, but too close to Windermere Marathon, so giving this one a miss

International Day of the Midwife

Well this is what it's all about - raising funds to train a midwife. And the picture shows the first fruits of our fundraising. Robinah was the first recipient of the scolarship set up to train a nurse, and this is her pictured after her graduation ceremony. She has now returned to Shyira to work, but because she is the only qualified midwife, she works long hours and is on call 24 hours a day, so the training of the next midwife is crucial. Please help us to raise £10000 over the next 4 years - support my appeal by clicking here Thank you for your support - any donation is welcome, no matter how big or small, and every penny received by Shyira Trust is used for the projects supported.

And then there were 2 ...

It's not just me - someone else is Running for Rwanda! James Partridge has kindly volunteered to run the Manchester 10k on May 17th - the same day that I run the Windermere Marathon. We are both running to raise funds for Shyira Trust, in particular raising funds for Midwifery training, the extension to the Maternity Hospital, and other safe motherhood projects. We are committed to raising £10,000 over 4 years to pay for Midwifery training. The Maternity extension will cost over £20,000 - over however long it takes. At the other end of the scale, £15 will pay for a Caesarean section, and £1.50 will pay for a normal delivery. Every penny received by Shyira Trust goes to the projects it was intended for, so please be generous. Even a few pounds can save a life - small change makes a big difference. To support James, in his first ever race, please click here . To support me, celebrating 25 years of running, please click here . Thank you for your support

25th Running Anniversary

I've just realised - Monday was the 25th anniversary of my first run! I did my first run (actually run-walk-jog-walk-stagger) on 20th April (Good Friday) 1984. How did I miss that ? But more to the point, how should I celebrate ? Maybe the Windermere Marathon is my belated way of celebrating. If you want to help me celebrate, join in by sponsoring me to run here or use the 'my appeal' widget on the right - all the money is used for Midwifery training and Safe Motherhood projects in Shyira, Rwanda

Windermere Marathon

I'm leaving behind the flat training runs around Formby, to take part in one of the hilliest road races in the country – the Windermere Marathon on May 17th - and hoping to raise funds for Shyira Trust, for their work in Shyira, Rwanda. In particular, helping to fund the training of a new midwife, the extension of the maternity hospital, and other safe-motherhood projects. When the new maternity hospital was completed in 2004, there were still no midwives, so Jane set up a scholarship to train a local nurse. The first recipient of this scholarship was Robinah, and she has completed her training and is now working back in Shyira, but she needs the support of more midwives. Jane has just returned from attending Robinah’s graduation, and spent a week working alongside her in the maternity hospital. The maternity is always full to capacity, so needs an extension. Also, Robinah is working on her own, and is on call 24 hours a day, so the training of the next midwife is also a priority.

Southport Good Friday races

Well that was over quickly ! Not the longest of races (4 miles), everyone takes it seriously, and it seems to be over in a flash, even if it is a couple of laps long. It was good to see some old freinds, and rekindle some old rivalries. More importantly, a few more people are now aware of this site, so will keep coming back from time to time. Results are here . I was 90th out of 185, in a time of 26:24 - not bad for an old 'un !

Southport Good Friday Races

It's April, so in keeping with doing at least one race a month, here's this month's offering - a 4-mile road race in and around Vicoria Park in Southport. There are, in fact, 3 races - a family fun run, a Ladies 4-mile race, and a Men's 4-mile race. All are well supported, so there should be quite a crowd. I've not done any fundraising, but will use the races to publicise this website - hopefully there'll be some response, and it may encourage other people to become involved in running for Rwanda.

Liverpool Half Marathon

Sadly, I am unable to take part in this year's Liverpool Half Marathon, which takes place on 29th March - I will be at Manchester airport ! I am not jetting off anywhere exotic, but I am there to pick up Jane who has been in Rwanda to attend Robinah's graduation ceremony. Robinah was the first nurse to benefit from the scholarship set up by Jane 4 years ago, and is now a qualified midwife, and is back in Shyira, working in the maternity hospital. Good luck to Robinah in her new career as a midwife, and good luck to everyone taking part in the Liverpool Half Marathon. Liverpool Half Marathon was going to be my main fund-raising event of Spring, but I guess I'll have to set my sights elsewhere. If you have a suggestion for an alternative event, or if you would like to help to raise funds for the next midwife undergoing training, or if you would just like to find out more, please follow the appropriate link above (e.g. Contact me , Sign up or FAQ's ). Thank you for takin

Red Nose Day 5k

Well, that was surprisingly good - in more ways than one ! Apart from initial contact, I hadn't seen any publicity about the run, and half expected to be lining up on the start line with just a handful of friends and colleagues, but was amazed to get there and find dozens lining up alongside me. At a guess, there were over 100 there, so Comic Relief should benefit to the tune of about £800, maybe more. Well done to everyone who turned up. On a personal note, I was hoping for about 22 minutes, but expected to struggle, due to health problems, but somehow managed to conjure up a half-decent performance from somewhere, finishing with a time of 20:41. It must be that new running 4 rwanda running vest which was appearing for the very first time ! NB: Official results are here - there were 132 finishers, raising £899. Well done, one and all

Red Nose Day 5k (Birchwood)

If you have come to get an entry form, you can download one here . The Red Nose Day 5k at Birchwood is in aid of Comic Relief. Shyira Trust is just one of many charities that can benefit from Comic Relief funding. So please support Comic Relief by running this race, or sponsoring someone else to run it. I usually run races to raise funds directly for Shyira Trust, but in this case I have decided NOT to actively seek sponsorship - I will support Comic Relief by running this race, and hope Shyira Trust may one day be successful with a grant application. I WILL seek sponsorship for other races (see Events), and will encourage other people to do the same. You can run on behalf of Shyira Trust, or sponsor someone else to run for Rwanda. If you already have an entry for a featured eace, and you want to run it in aid of Shyira Trust, please go to and follow the 'Become an online fundraiser' link. If you want to know anything else, have a look at the 

GNW half marathon (Blackpool)

Blackpool in February was as I expected it to be - bracing ! And deserted, apart from the 1500 hardy souls who'd made the trip for a flat, and sometimes fast, half-marathon. The course is not inspirational - 2 laps of what is basically an 'out and back' cours e: the 'out' leg is pancake flat, along the Lower Walk - the sea wall (see picture - that's me on the far right); the 'back' leg is along the Middle Walk - higher, and more undulating. As it turned out, times were good - lots of PB's and season's bests - helped by the cool conditions, and the breeze which was from the side rather than being head-on. I had a target of 1:38, aiming for 7:30/mile, so was a bit shocked to go through 1m in 7:07, but feeling good. There were RW pacers, but not at my pace, so ran with the 7min pacer in sight, but at a distance. I kept as steady as possible, but half expected to blow up in the 2nd half. However, I managed to keep it together, averaging 7:10 - 7:15 f

Red Nose Day 5k (Birchwood)

If you have come to get an entry form, you can download one here . The Red Nose Day 5k at Birchwood is in aid of Comic Relief. Shyira Trust is just one of many charities that can benefit from Comic Relief funding. So please support Comic Relief by running this race, or sponsoring someone else to run it. Or - you can ensure that ALL money raised or donated by you goes directly to projects in Shyira. You can run on behalf of Shyira Trust, or sponsor someone else to run for Rwanda. If you already have an entry for this year's Red Nose Day 5k and you want to run it in aid of Shyira Trust, please go to and follow the 'Become an online fundraiser' link. Or - sponsor me to run it. Go to my personal fund-raising page at Thanks for your interest, and thanks for your support

Contrasting views (2) ...

Six things you may see in Blackpool, that you won't see in Shyira: The Tower (obviously). Trams - or any transport, come to that. There may be a hospital vehicle or 2, or you may see a wooden scooter/cycle (pictured right), but apart from that, everyone walks. The illuminations - in fact you'll be hard-pressed to see anything electric - the only electricity is from the hospital generator, which only fires up for 2 or 3 hours a night. The sea - Shyira is 600 miles from the nearest sea. Holidaymakers - you may see visitors, but they are usually visiting the hospital, or one of the projects being undertaken. The zoo - the only animals you see are for food, or for lugging heavy loads (pictured left). Pets ? What are they ? In Shyira, you will see rampant poverty and extreme hardship, but you will also find smiling children, and kind-hearted adults. Even if someone has next-to-nothing, they will still invite you into their home, and share a meal with you. You can help fund the pr

Great North West half marathon

After going 2 years without running a half-marathon, the next race on the horizon is another half - the GNW half-marathon at Blackpool on 22nd February. This is another big event, with over 1200 entries, and attracts runners from all over the country. I will be using the event to raise funds for the Shyira Trust, and also to raise awareness of this website, and its fund-raising objectives. As always, every penny raised goes to Shyira in Rwanda, and is used to help fund the training of a midwife for Shyira maternity hospital. My fund-raising pages can be found at or by using the 'my appeal' widget on the right of this page. Thank you for your support

Helsby half marathon - mission accomplished

This was never going to be an easy run - it was my first half-marathon in 2 years (or was it 3 ?), so I didn't know quite what to expect. I knew it was likely to be hard, but I wasn't quite sure how I would cope. As it turned out, I was quite pleased. I was happy to go round in 8 min/mile, giving me a time of 1hr 45, but I went through the first 4 miles in under 30 mins, and 8 miles in just on 60 mins, so although I slowed after about 6 miles, I knew that if I could keep to 8 min/mile, I could manage 1:40. There was a long downhill stretch after 11 miles, so I speeded up, and managed to finish in a time of 1:38:43. So very happy ! On a fund-raising note, this was not about raising money - this was more about raising awareness. I managed to hand out some 'running4rwanda' leaflets, and have had some feedback, so in that sense - mission accomplished

Contrasting views ...

The photo on the left was taken on the Helsby Half Marathon course (with thanks to Natalie Rees for use of the photo ). It shows a view of a typical rural village in North-West England. The one on the right shows a view of a typical rural village in North-West Rwanda. This is Shyira. The building in the foreground is one of the secondary schools, the building in the far left background is the Maternity Hospital. Beyond that is the rest of the hospital, with the church, nursery school and primary school further out of sight. The photo was taken from the road to the main secondary school, and shows the main road (yes - this is the main road) through the village, with the road to the right going down into the valley towards Bihembe, before following the valley side, down towards the Ruhengeri-Giterama road. To get to Shyira, you need to be in a 4x4, or be prepared for a long walk !

New Year, new challenge, same cause

January sees a new challenge - the Four Villages Half Marathon at Helsby, Cheshire. Not quite as big as the Liverpool Santa Dash (about 2000 entrants, compared to 7000), but more of a personal challenge - this will be my first half marathon in several years, so I'm not quite sure what I'm letting myself in for ! My fund raising will be very low key, but if I do raise any sponsorship, it will all go towards the Maternity Hospital and Safe Motherhood projects in Shyira, Rwanda. My fund-raising pages can be found at or by using the 'my appeal' widget on the right of this page. Thank you for your support

Liverpool Santa Dash - the final reckoning

Well, Christmas is over, so it's time to close the Santa Dash thread, and announce the final figure raised. The grand total was £429 - mainly in cash and cheques, but some through on-line donations. I would like to give a big 'Thank You' to all those people who donated, regardless of how the money was given. The money has nearly all been collected, and sent for transfer to Rwanda. It has been added to money already raised throughout the year, so the funding is in place for next year's University fees for the new student-midwife, Fidele, whose course starts later this month. Once more - many thanks - your support is appreciated