Latest News | 16 September 2021

Runners to tackle virtual marathon in aid of child exploitation charity

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Three local runners are preparing to take on the Virgin Money Virtual London Marathon in aid of specialist child exploitation charity Safe and Sound.

Childhood friends Anthony Lomas and Mark Wallace have mapped out a 26.2-mile route from Chatsworth to Safe and Sound’s offices in Darley Abbey.

Anthony is a partner at Boxall Brown and Jones estate agents who, alongside sister company BB&J Commercial, have adopted Safe and Sound as their charity of the year.

He will be taking part in the virtual marathon on Sunday 3 October alongside best friend and running mate Mark who is a key account director at Reach plc, which owns the Derby Telegraph.

Also taking part in aid of Safe and Sound is Nick Fairbrother, from Mickleover, who is PE lead at a city primary school.

The virtual marathon will see 50,000 participants tackling a course of their choice at their own pace – logging their route and times on a dedicated app to qualify for a medal.

Tracy Harrison is chief executive of Safe and Sound, which supports children and young people across Derbyshire who are victims of or at risk of child exploitation including online grooming, sexual exploitation, trafficking, drugs lines, modern slavery and radicalisation.

The charity also supports the wider family and raises awareness in local communities of the dangers facing young people.

She said: “We are very grateful to Anthony, Mark and Nick for stepping up to take part in the Virtual Marathon and raise money for us.

“We will be cheering them back to Darley Abbey Mills and hope that they breeze over the finishing line for a well-deserved drink and snack.

“The serious message behind their wonderful enthusiasm and energy is that we desperately need money to support more young people across Derbyshire.

“We support and protect a growing number of children aged as young as seven who are targeted online and in person by perpetrators looking to criminally exploit them for their own purposes.

“We are also working with a growing number of families who are affected by exploitation as well as re-launching an extensive awareness-raising programme, now that we are able to attend groups and schools, to ensure people know about dangers facing young people in our local communities.”

To support Anthony and Mark’s efforts please click here.

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