Teacher Stephen Wadge chalked up a parkrun milestone – and celebrated by making a bumper shop donation on behalf of his class to East Anglia’s Children’s Hospices (EACH).
The 24-year-old is an avid parkrunner and regularly takes part in the free, weekly, community event, which involve people running five kilometres every Saturday morning.
They take place in parks and open spaces across the world and Stephen recently completed a ‘full house’ of the 14 Suffolk parkruns by ticking off the Lowestoft event.
To celebrate, he went straight to the EACH shop in London Road South and made a donation to the charity, which supports families and cares for children and young people with life-threatening conditions across East Anglia.
“I teach at Finborough School, in Great Finborough,” said Stephen, who lives in Stowmarket and celebrates his 25th birthday on Saturday.
“As a school, during the last half-term, our headteacher challenged every form class to carry out an act of community service.
“7SWA, my class, decided they wanted to help local children less fortunate than themselves.
“As a group, we decided to collect items and donate them to EACH. It does amazing work caring for children with life-threatening illnesses in our region.
“We read some of the accounts online and liked reading about how the needs of children and families are always put first.
“Many of the children were already familiar with the charity and the work it does and had seen the shops on local high streets.
“When we looked at the website as a class and read about some of the fantastic things EACH does, we all agreed it was a wonderful cause to donate to.”
Stephen has chalked up 38 different venues to date, including several in his native North-East, since starting out in July 2017. His personal best time is 22 minutes and 20 seconds.
Lee Carter, EACH shop manager in Lowestoft, said: “It was lovely to meet Stephen.
“We had a nice chat and he sang the praises of EACH.
“He walked away smiling and asked me to take a photo of him dropping off donations to share with his pupils.
“It’s great to hear how engaged the children are as far as fundraising is concerned.”