Charity fund-raising champion Derek Haines aims to raise $1 million from six marathon runs this year.
Even though he is 65 years old, there is no let up in his busy schedule.
At an age when the average man’s idea of sports participation is changing channels on ESPN’s TV selection, Mr. Haines is embarking on his most demanding year ever with six 26.1 mile runs spread between Cayman, America, Asia and Europe.
He already has about a third of that sum pledged and is confident that by the end of the year, when he completes the series with the Cayman Islands Marathon on Dec. 7, that magic figure will be achieved.
Motivation to complete all these arduous runs will not be a problem because the celebrated fund-raiser has already raised hundreds of thousands of dollars for various worthy Cayman Islands causes.
A Rotarian, Mr. Haines has plenty of backing in the corporate, sporting and social community. Under the patronage of Governor Helen Kilpatrick, together with the support of the Cayman HospiceCare and the Rotary Club of Grand Cayman, Mr. Haines accepted the challenge to raise funds for a new purpose-built hospice building that will include a new inpatient care unit.
The governor has also agreed to host a reception at her residence in March to officially launch the appeal.
The Englishman is well connected in Cayman. Apart from his Rotary colleagues, he is a former senior officer of the Royal Cayman Islands Police Service and is the president of the Cayman Islands Rugby Union. He is now head of security for Dart.
Mr. Haines’s first challenge will be the Paris marathon on Apr. 6, swiftly followed by the London marathon a week later. “I’m a bit worried about doing them back to back but I’m sure I’ll find a way,” he said.
Mr. Haines has also applied to enter the New York marathon, is considering Chicago and is hoping that his daughter Lizzy can join him on another one in the Pacific basin in late June. Then it’s a well-earned rest, recharging of batteries and cranking up again for the Cayman marathon, which he usually runs in just over four hours.
“This is an exciting challenge but I am sure I am up to it, although this is twice the number I have ever run in a year before,” Mr. Haines said.
“It is also the largest appeal I have been directly involved in but, if previous fund raisers are a guide, I am confident we can raise the required amount for this very necessary facility.”
The hospice facility, which ideally will be set in pleasant surroundings in a calm environment, will cost around $1 million and will be an operations and administration building to include offices for the clinical team, that will continue to provide at-home care, as well as inpatient care, together with both the administration and fund-raising staff.
Attached, with a separate entrance, will be en suite rooms for an inpatient hospice facility, with the attendant supporting elements such as a kitchen, lounge for family and other amenities.
The need for storage of both medical and fund-raising event elements and a kitchen for Lunch Club activities will also be included.
All travel costs and registration fees will be self-funded by Mr. Haines and the Rotary Club of Grand Cayman is donating $2,800 to the British Hospice Society to guarantee his entry into the London race.
Rotary Club treasurer Chris Johnson is opening a dedicated bank account to accommodate donations towards the appeal.
He said, “Every dollar that is donated to this appeal will be used for completing this new hospice facility. There will be no administrative costs or other expenses paid from it and I think this is very important for donors to understand.”
Mr. Haines’s marathon appeals in the past four years have raised more than $250,000 for local charities, which included providing a new bus for the Lighthouse School and a substantial contribution to the Cayman Islands Cancer Society and the Health Services Authority towards a chemotherapy unit.
When he ran the Cayman marathon two months ago, he raised more than $37,000 for the Feed our Future Cayman Islands summer meals program, which gives local kids at least one decent meal a day during school breaks because so many of them are dependent on school lunches.
Mr. Haines said, “Folks have been very generous with their support and most people understand the need for a care facility of this kind.
“I have already received promises of substantial funding and of other means of completing this project. A million dollars is a large amount but we can raise it.”
Motivation to complete all these arduous runs will not be a problem because the champion charity fund-raiser has already raised hundreds of thousands of dollars for various worthy Cayman Islands causes.