>Clara’s running a half marathon!

>Hi! Let me introduce myself – I am Clara and work as a Trusts Fundraiser here at Book Aid International.

When the subject of the half marathon came up a few months ago, my initial reaction was one of both horror and disbelief. How could anyone even contemplate tackling such a distance! Who would voluntarily put themselves through the blood, sweat and tears of gruelling training sessions? ‘Me’ was the last word on my mind at this stage!

> Photo: my underused trainers – they won’t know what’s hit them!

And yet here I am, bracing myself for the 13-mile race on Sunday 12 October. Despite my original worries, the reasons I’m so happy to be taking part in it are in fact multiple. Improved fitness, the sense of achievement, but most importantly raising much-needed funds to get books out to sub-Saharan Africa where they are most desperately needed! Literacy is something we fully take for granted from childhood here, which makes the statistic that 1/5 of the world’s adults are illiterate all the more staggering.

To live life without being able to read a map, a medicine bottle or a voting ballot is something we Westerners can hardly even fathom. By sending out over 500,000 new and carefully selected books each year, Book Aid International is trying to help solve the chronic book shortage and empower Africans to make informed decisions about their everyday lives. At a cost of just £1.25 to send a brand-new book, each and every donation really does go a long way.

I hope you will share my marathon journey with me. If you feel inspired to encourage me through the pain barrier with some sponsorship, I have set up a Just Giving page here.

This weekend I am to be dusting off my trainers for a run around Battersea Park – look forward to updating you on how I fare!



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