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15 Jun 2020

Darren runs incredible 101 miles in 26 hours for SANE

The pandemic has had a huge impact on the charity sector and we’ve certainly felt this at SANE. 

We are so incredibly grateful to all of our amazing supporters who have helped us to continue our frontline services during this difficult time. Your generous donations and fundraising activities have made all of the difference.

In this edition of our Star Fundraiser article we are featuring Darren Tait, who completed a 101-mile ultra marathon in 26hrs and 24mins on 15 May, raising an amazing £1,577 to help SANE’s recipients. His fundraising will help to fund our team of mental health professionals who have made hundreds of calls through our Caller Care services.

Darren Tait

You might be thinking, what inspired Darren to undertake such a gruelling challenge? Well, besides been an ultra-marathon athlete and a former Cirque du Soleil soloist, Darren is also very passionate about raising awareness of mental health. 

Why is Darren supporting SANE?

“The reason why I chose SANE charity is because a mental health nurse, that I know very well, said check out SANE mental health charity, they are really, really good. I checked you guys out and I thought to myself: this is the one (charity) I will be raising money for this year.”

Darren ran 28 loops of Hyde Park for “those affected by loneliness, depression through to anxiety and alcoholism or drug abuse”.

He had a small support team including an NHS community psychiatric nurse who followed government rules and paced Darren at various intervals throughout the night of 15 May and subsequent day. The support team dropped him food and drink parcels at aid stations spaced accordingly around the park and other locations.

As a person who fought his own mental ill-health many years ago, Darren wants “to get people up and help them to believe in themselves”.

You can follow his journey on his Instagram account @darrentaitofficial.

When asked about his experience of the ultra-marathon, Darren said: “It was a hard run because it was on concretes, but my big goal was to get there for you guys [SANE’s beneficiaries].”

Darren ran overnight and in his own words: “It got tough out there at night by yourself. I had a couple of pacers, pacing me around at night to keep me going, keeping me energised. Mentally it was really, really hard on my mind but I knew I was going to get there in the end through perseverance.”

A huge thanks to Darren, to the NHS community psychiatric nurse, to his supporting friends and his PR representative Lucy for making this fundraising venture possible.

Have you thought of challenging yourself on one of our events and helping people who struggle with their mental health? Here’s your chance, take a look at some of our Challenge Events now!

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