Dave Morland has chosen to run the Great North Run 2019 in aid of RSN! We asked him a few questions about his choice of challenge, and why education for young refugees is so important to him. If you feel inspired by Dave's story, why not donate to his fundraising page or better yet, join him as one of our 2019 RSN champions?
What challenge are you taking on, and why did you choose this in particular?
I am running the Great North Run. The GNR is an iconic half marathon run, and the largest half marathon in the world. I have recently returned to running, but have only ever completed one half marathon before, which was the GNR in 1982. I have chosen the run GNR as I live in the north east of England, so the GNR is local to me and will allow my family and friends to support me in person at the event.
Why have you chosen to support RSN?
I work at Teesside University in the town of Middlesbrough, in the north east of England. In my role at the University I undertake a lot of international travel and have seen at first hand how many communities across different continents have to struggle against extreme poverty, political and social exclusion, prejudice and discrimination.
Middlesbrough has seen a significant rise in its asylum seeking community over recent years, and I have been involved in a number of projects through the University seeking to support asylum seekers and refugees in the town. As part of that work, I led one project to introduce Teesside Sanctuary Awards at the University in 2018. The awards are part of the Article 26 project which sits under the Helena Kennedy Foundation. Teesside was the first University in the north east of England to introduce such awards, and we have been advising colleagues from other institutions in the region as they also look to introduce similar scholarships. The scholarships allow students who are asylum seekers to study at university, and help these young people to overcome the barrier of not being able to access a student loan to support their academic aspirations.
I have chosen to support RSN as the work RSN does to support young people from a forced-migration background aligns very closely to the work I have done here at Teesside, and I am delighted to be able to raise funds that will help young people from a forced-migration background to access education and improve their lives.
You can donate to Dave's fundraising page here. Thank you so much to Dave for your support!