In June I made a rather strange decision to run 3 miles every day. I am not a good runner nor a keen one but with lockdown, running was the only fundraising event that I knew I could stick to.
I chose to run 1 mile every day for each of the Three Girls who gave their story to raise awareness of what grooming is and how the justice system has treated them.
I felt extremely passionate about doing something, anything, to raise awareness and funding for victims of sexual abuse. The BBC drama ‘Three Girls’ sparked my interest and since then I have been looking at ways I can help change the response that victims of grooming receive.
I am now studying to become a counsellor and hope to specialise in working with victims of abuse. Recently there has been an investigation into the grooming gangs across the Uk. Unfortunately the results have not been published. I signed a petition for the government to release the results of the grooming gang inquiry so that we can all be more aware of this outrageous crime and help to support the victims and prevent future victims. I received an email that seemed to me to be further compounding the issue by promoting more silence on it.
So I found The Maggie Oliver’s Foundation and instantly I felt relieved that someone was helping these young girls. The Maggie Oliver Foundation looks to me to be a sanctuary for victims to be heard, something which sadly doesn’t happen often enough! I felt compelled to do something to support this wonderful charity!
I have never questioned my choice of charity to support, my method however was some what stupid considering I am not a runner! A broken toe, twisted ankle, a few painfully early alarms and a lot of talking myself into putting my trainers on again and I am delighted at the amount of money my family and friends have managed to raise! £1120!!!!!
Some of my friends, family and colleagues joined me at different points throughout the month which was lovely to have someone to talk to and get out of my head and lead-like legs!
Maggie Oliver herself was also a great support, responding to my messages and letting me know what this money means to the foundation which was so motivating!
I feel so inspired by her work and the kindness of people donating at such a strange and uncertain time. I have started to feel hopeful that things can and will change for victims of sexual abuse and in particular grooming gang victims! So hopeful in fact that I would put my trainers on and run another 90 miles.