Derek Haines, the celebrated athlete who raised more than $1 million for a new Cayman HospiceCare facility by running six marathons last year, has found a new recipient for his next 26.2-mile run.
With the support of the Special Needs Foundation of Cayman and the Rotary Clubs of Grand Cayman and Grand Cayman Central, Mr. Haines will run the Cayman Islands Marathon on Dec. 6 to raise $50,000 toward four projects for the Special Needs Foundation.
The challenge is called “50/50” as he hopes to recruit 50 runners in support.
Mr. Haines, 66, said, “It is not necessary for the runners to raise any money, just to take part in the marathon, half-marathon or the relay on the day.
“Youngsters in the children’s race can also join in. Obviously, it will be great if they can raise funds, but raising awareness is very important too.”
As in previous years, Rotary Club treasurer Chris Johnson is opening a dedicated bank account to accommodate donations for the appeal.
“As always, every dollar that is donated will go to the charity,” Mr. Johnson said. “There will be no administrative costs or other expenses paid from it, and I think this is very important for donors to understand.”
Susie Bodden, executive leader of the Special Needs Foundation, said, “We are delighted that Derek has agreed to lead the charge. The funds will be used for our respite care program, equine therapy, family support and a sports and leisure club.” She added that the foundation is a not-for-profit organization dedicated to supporting children with a range of special needs across the Cayman Islands.
Mr. Haines, whose marathon appeals in the past five years have raised almost $2 million for local charities, said, “Folks and companies have been very generous with their support over the years, and I am very grateful to all of them.
“By working together and supporting this challenge, we can make life so much better for those in need.”