Friday, 31 January 2014

Running to Help Children With Partial Sight, Mark Honeyman

Today on my Blog, I am steering away from books, authors and all things to do with publishing. What! I hear you cry! Well, there is a very good reason because I want you to meet a man who is determined to make a difference to children who have not been blessed with good or even poor eyesight.

My special guest sitting round my pool is, Mark Honeyman, until now you have probably never heard of him. Mark is an ordinary guy who is going to run the 2014 London Marathon raising funds for Children who are blind or partially sighted. I know what it is like to live with someone who has visual disability; I live with a wonderful person who suffers from very poor sight and has done for over twenty years.  For the marathon we have sponsored Mark, but more importantly I wanted to share what Mark is working to achieve. With his feisty determination and your help, Mark will complete the London Marathon and help partially sighted children. Here's what Mark said when I fired questions at him….

What made you run the London marathon?

A couple of years ago I decided to take my fitness more seriously, and entered a local marathon as a goal to set for myself. I did that and so set another, carried on training, set another and so on...last June I was looking at far flung marathons to enter as a new challenge, and a saw an advert for London, not quite the far flung I had in mind, but it's one of the biggest, most broadcasted and apparently one of the most enjoyable, all in my nation's capital, why not?

Why did you choose to raise funds for V.I.C.T.A.?

We needed a charity to run for, in order to secure a place for London and I wanted to be able to run for a charity that helps blind and partially sighted people. As we were looking my partner suggested helping children, it was then we saw on the list V.I.C.T.A, a charity that helps blind and partially sighted children and young people, perfect!

Can you tell us a little about your chosen charity?

V.I.C.T.A stands for visually impaired children taking action, and they aim to do just that.
They help blind children, young people and their families in a variety of different ways, including social gatherings so children and families can interact with each other on days out and even holidays, of course all of this costs money. Fund raising is important to organisations like V.I.C.T.A.

How are you fund raising?

A number of things and one is answering these questions, Pauline, thanks for asking them! My target is £1,250 and that is a minimum and it's not easy, but in some form or another every moment of my life is geared towards London at the moment. From training to the planning of the trip and fund raising forms the most important part of this marathon. It takes up a large chunk of time and effort. Up to now donations have come in from family, friends, colleagues etc. but I'm only half way, so I need to encourage more people to support me to help V.I.C.T.A In other words I need the donations to keep coming in.  To help with this, I've also organised a raffle with great prizes kindly donated by a number of great companies. I'm hoping this will be a significant contribution to the eventual total. I am very luck, my partner, Sabrina has given me a big hand in the raising money side of it, and that's been a massive help.

And finally tell us about your training programme?

My training programme at the moment has yet to go into intense, I have been training and hard, following a schedule, while I will always push myself, my current level of fitness thanks to my previous challenges has put me in a better position for the London marathon, and so far I'm find it less trying. I'm currently running 3-4 times a week one of those is a long run of about 2hrs 30, as well as 1-2 days conditioning. This programme will increase to 5 days running, 1 day conditioning and the long run of about 3:30 minutes, with only one rest day! All this as we get closer to the big day!

Thank you so much Mark for taking a breather to come and sit round my pool talking about this fantastic challenge. Good luck and we'll be cheering you on every step of the way.
If you feel you can help Mark and V.I.C.T.A. please click on Mark's page at the London Marathon / Virgin Money Giving.

And as always, thank you to you for visiting my Blog, I hope you have enjoyed meeting the determined, Mark Honeyman.


Unknown said...

Close your eyes, the world is a very different place. It can be frightening and lonely. As a writer I can't, and don't want to, imagine how it would be. Will message you, Pauline. x

Pauline Barclay said...

Hello Madalyn, thank you so much for coming along and also sharing this on your Facebook page. Hugs xxx

Rosemary Ann Smith said...

Very good luck to Mark! I am registered partially sighted, and have been short sighted since I was 3yrs old. This is a wonderful way to bring this charity into focus. There are so many children who have sight impairment. Well done Mark, I wish you every success. And thank you Pauline for raising the issue ... Rosy

Pauline Barclay said...

Hello Rosemary, sad to hear about your own sight issues, those with good vision have no idea how life is through poor eyes. Thank you so much for joining us today and for Mark's good wishes. xx

Unknown said...

What a wonderful cause. Very important yet under-recognized. Illnesses like cancer, diabetes, etc. are well known and forever in the fundraising spotlight (and well they should be; I don't begrudge them this). But it's nice to *see* other important causes promoted, too. The London marathon is a great opportunity to create awareness and raise funds. Kudos!

p.s. While I certainly can't claim to be blind or even partially so, I have horrible vision. I have the maximum correction possible for nearsightedness yet my vision continues to worsen. That means things will never look "crisp" for me anymore. On top of that, I have something called Fourth Nerve Palsy. Simply put, the muscles of my eyes don't coordinate together, and there's an issue with the nerves, too. I need special correction to keep everything from going double. When I'm not actively concentrating on what I'm looking at, things blur and go double even with correction. So when I'm at my computer writing but become lost in the world I'm writing about, I'll notice that my own world has become out of whack! :D So I do appreciate this charity. Kids need to see as best they can!

Rosalind Adam said...

It tires me out just reading about it. I really admire people who can run and raise money this way. Good luck, Mark.

Pauline Barclay said...

Hi Tanya, sorry to about your eye sight problem, I hope you can get the help you need. Take care x

Pauline Barclay said...

Hello Ros, I know what you mean! Thanks for calling by. x

Pauline Barclay said...

Mark & Sabrina are having problems leaving a message, Blogger grrr! Both would like to say a HUGE thank you for visiting and commenting. They are overwhelmed with your kindness. Also a BIG BIG thank you to Madalyn Morgan for her donation. It has made Mark's day and helped towards his target for these special children.