Last summer, my parents asked me if I wanted to be a ‘pacer’ for one of the kids from the Care2Run organisation, in a local community 3km race. Essentially, I was to run a 3km with one of them, to give them an appropriate pace to run at, and give them lots of support. Being a relatively strong runner and member of ISKL’s Varsity cross country team, I agreed, expecting to enjoy a short run with an inexperienced young kid.
On the day of the race, I was introduced to my runner, a tall, slim boy only a few years younger than me. He had no obvious mental or physical disability, but like many children in Care2Run, he might have had a disorder that wasn’t obvious or simply he may have come from a broken home.
I realized early on in the race that he was much faster than me. The remainder of the race was spent, ironically, with him encouraging me and cheering me on. No matter how many times I told him to go ahead (he was a participant in the race; I was not), he refused, and stuck by me the whole way through.
It was amazing to see these young kids, who had dealt with so many struggles, being a part of such a wonderful community, welcoming strangers like me with open arms.
I was soon introduced to the Care2Run organisation, and their work with children who are differently-abled, or from under-served communities. While Care2Run has only been operating for 4 years, it has proved to be a wonderful outlet for many children. Having participated in their sessions, I have watched the program teach the children an array of life skills, from good communication to proper nutrition. I am always stunned by how deeply personal their work is with each individual child in Care2Run.
I participated in is Care2Run’s Foundation program, where children ages 6-18 are encouraged to become more independent and confident within their interactions with others, through playing games and learning about sportsmanship and leadership in a safe, welcoming environment.
For each child to be able to participate in the program, it costs RM1500. This is where we at ISKL come in. Through registration fees for the ISKL 3KM Fun Run on 28 September, we hope to raise enough money to fund at least two children to attend the Foundation program. We’re also hoping to have runners from Care2Run join the event.
While there are medals and timing chips to be given out, the race is simply meant to be a Fun Run, for the entire ISKL community, including ISKL alumni, to come out and take part. We encourage all runners, walkers and joggers to register and support this cause. Runners who prefer to be part of a team can opt to form teams of seven and, although each runner will be running the race individually, the total time of each team will be added up and scored for trophies. If you don’t have a team, don’t worry; you will be put into one with other people.
The Varsity and Junior Varsity teams will be there, running in their own teams of seven, some with their families, some with their friends. Some of us will even act as pacers for the Care2Run kids if needed. Everyone on the team is extremely friendly and happy to help anyone who needs it, and we are all super excited to be able to share this racing experience that we all love so much with the rest of the school. ~ post written by Wen Li Y.