A fancy-dress Christmas tree and an evergreen priest were among the 250 participants in the 31st annual CAFOD Fun Run which served as a fundraiser for the Syrian refugee crisis.
The event took place at Wavertree Park – aka The Mystery – on Sunday 27 December and while James Walsh (pictured) and Jude Robinson took the sporting honours in winning the adults and children's races respectively, the day certainly put the fun into running for the majority of the contestants.
Some 250 people ran, walked, pushed prams – and even toddled – for CAFOD in the December sunshine. Bishop John Rawsthorne was among the high turnout of priests and religious, a notable presence among whom was Father John Butchard, competing for the 30th time having begun taking part in the 1980s. The four-legged section meanwhile was won by Karen Skaife and her pet Jack Russell – despite that duo being pipped to the line by the fancy-dress tree.
Mike Dooling, who organises the event along with founder Mike Merriman, said of a successful occasion: "We were delighted to see so many old friends and also so many new people running this year for the first time."
Supplementing the physical activity were caterers from Scoff Outside while the Rioters Jazz Band provided a musical backdrop to a day facilitated also by 16 volunteers who assisted with marshalling, face-painting, registering the athletes and manning the stalls.
Proceeds from the 2015 run will go towards helping people affected by the Syrian refugee crisis, in a country where 7.5 million are displaced and another 4 million have left as refugees. In such circumstances, the support of CAFOD's trusted church partners can be a matter of life or death. CAFOD asks for sponsorship monies to be returned as soon as possible please.
With future fun runs on the horizon, Mike Dooling issued an invitation to any wannabe assistants or helpers to get in touch via firstname.lastname@example.org or 0151 228 4028. "I've always organised athletics events and I am passionate about the work that CAFOD does. I offered to get involved 20 years ago and have helped out ever since. The CAFOD Fun Run is a fantastic event for all of the family to join in after Christmas."