Guest Post From Team Kerr
Our Fight To Be Accepted Into the London Marathon.
Team Kerr is a running team from County Down, Northern Ireland, consisting of Dad (David), Mum (Sandra) and the main man Aaron, who has complex needs and uses a custom built running wheelchair. Their goal is to promote inclusion and see assisted running become a common sight in road races throughout the country, this is their story:
“If you were to ask anyone who aspires to run a marathon, London Marathon would probably be right at the top of the list.
People from all over the world travel to take part and soak up the fun atmosphere. But there is another side to the London Marathon, a side that is not so inclusive.
Imagine having completed 34 marathons, but to be consistently told by London Marathon that you are not welcome at their event and that they won’t even talk to you about it.
We have taken part in 126 events, including those 34 marathons, all whilst promoting inclusion and disability awareness. We have a 100% safety record and testimonials from numerous race directors complementing us on our professionalism and attitude, but for the last 3 years London Marathon have refused to let us enter.
The reason they have given us is that as Aaron cannot complete the marathon under his own power, then he cannot be a competitor. We have asked for Aaron to take part as a non-competitor, but that has also been refused.
We are completely self sufficient and aren’t asking for special treatment. We just want to take part. Our son’s life is extremely difficult and running has given him, and us an escapism that we could only have imagine having been isolated for so many years, caught up in the endless cycle of hospital appointments and loneliness.
A child with complex needs turns into an adult with complex needs, and gradually as th e years go by things are taken away and the opportunities get less and less, the only thing that never goes away is the disability.
Running makes us feel a part of the community. We love running with our son and we’ve earned the right to run 26.2 miles around London.
If you would like to read more about Team Kerr's story you can find their website and twitter account linked below: