Three local runners are tackling the Virgin Money Virtual London Marathon on Sunday October 3 to raise money for Derbyshire’s specialist child exploitation charity Safe and Sound.
Childhood friends Anthony Lomas and Mark Wallace have mapped out a 26.2 mile route from Chatsworth to Safe and Sound’s offices in Darley Abbey.
Anthony is a partner at Boxall Brown and Jones estate agents who, alongside sister company BB&J Commercial, have adopted Safe and Sound as their charity of the year.
He will be taking part in the virtual marathon alongside best friend and running mate Mark Wallace who is a key account director at Reach plc.
Also taking part is Nick Fairbrother (40) from Mickleover who is PE lead at a city primary school who last ran the London Marathon in 2010.
All three are upping their training over the coming weeks in preparation for the 26.2 mile virtual London Marathon which will see 50,000 participants tackling a course of their choice at their own pace on Sunday October 3 – logging their route and times on a dedicated app to qualify for a medal.
The virtual marathon will run alongside the actual event in the capital which will see a record-breaking 50,000 elite, amateur and charity runners tackling the course between Blackheath and The Mall.
Anthony and Mark (both aged 40) first met at playschool, attended Walter Evans and Ecclesbourne schools together and have been firm friends ever since. Anthony chose Mark to be best man at his wedding and Mark is godfather to Anthony’s young son.
As well as spending time together as families, both run together at least three times a week and, over the years, have competed in a wide range of events from 5k to full marathons.
Mr Lomas said: “I have taken part in the London Marathon before and Mark has run the Oslo Marathon in Norway but we have always fancied running one together.
“Boxall Brown and Jones support Safe and Sound so we decided to enter the virtual London Marathon this year under this fantastic local charity’s banner and raise awareness and money for them at the same time.”
On Sunday October 3, they will be dropped off at Chatsworth and run 26.2 miles back to Safe and Sound’s offices in Darley Abbey Mills – close to where they both live.
Mr Wallace continued: “The A6 may sound like a boring route but it takes in some stunning views and world heritage sites and closely follows the River Derwent which is a beautiful backdrop.
“We train together all the time and talk absolute rubbish when we do so decided we may as well carry that on for three hours instead of one.
“There is an option to split up the mileage across a 24-hour period for this virtual event but we plan to run the whole route in one go. Other than the mental and physical challenge of a marathon on our 40-year-old bodies – it should be a walk in the park – or rather a run on the road!”
Meanwhile Nick Fairbrother decided to support Safe and Safe where his uncle works alongside a team of volunteers.
He said: “I know just what an amazing job this charity does to support young people and their families across the county so was keen to fly the flag for them.
“Having run for many years, I have been recovering from a heel operation which has flared up from time to time but I am confident that I can power through and have been building up the miles to get back to being marathon-fit.”
Tracy Harrison is CEO of Safe and Sound which supports children and young people across Derbyshire who are victims of or at risk of child exploitation including online grooming, sexual exploitation, trafficking, drugs lines, modern slavery and radicalisation.
The charity also supports the wider family and raises awareness in local communities of the dangers facing young people.
She said: “We are very grateful to Anthony, Mark and Nick for stepping up to take part in the Virtual Marathon and raise money for us.
“We will be cheering them back to Darley Abbey Mills and hope that they breeze over the finishing line for a well deserved drink and snack.
“The serious message behind their wonderful enthusiasm and energy is that we desperately need money to support more young people across Derbyshire.
“We support and protect a growing number of children aged as young as seven who are targeted online and in person by perpetrators looking to criminally exploit them for their own purposes.
“We are also working with a growing number of families who are affected by exploitation as well as re-launching an extensive awareness-raising programme, now that we are able to attend groups and schools, to ensure people know about dangers facing young people in our local communities.”
To support Anthony and Mark’s efforts, please visit https://www.justgiving.com/fundraising/boxall-brown-and-jones
For more information about the work of Safe and Sound and how to support the charity’s work, please visit https://www.safeandsoundgroup.org.uk
Safe and Sound has been shortlisted for two prestigious awards in recognition of its innovative work to support and protect young people and their families who are victims of or at risk of child exploitation.
Firstly, Safe and Sound is a finalist in the Derbyshire Live Business Awards in the Not For Profit Organisation category – sponsored by Sellick Group recruitment specialists. The awards will be announced at Derby Arena on October 21.
Secondly, East Midlands Chamber have recognised Safe and Sound’s collaborative work by shortlisting the charity for this category in the Derbyshire Business Awards which will be announced on November 12.
Safe and Sound CEO Tracy Harrison said: “Entering awards such as these are important to raise the profile of the work we do across Derbyshire.
“They also recognise the contribution made by everyone in the organisation as well as our partners and supporters to support some of the most vulnerable young people and their families in our local communities.
“Reaching the finals is very rewarding in its own right – although it would be wonderful to actually come back with the winners’ trophies as well!”
Allen Graham, Chair of Safe and Sound added: “As a board of trustees we are extremely proud of the work our staff do in protecting vulnerable young people whilst facilitiating and enabling our communities to be safer places to live.
“Gaining recognition of their efforts through these nominations is gratifying and a wonderful validation of their efforts. We thank all our partners and supporters and wish to congratulate all finalists.”
Derbyshire’s specialist child exploitation charity Safe and Sound are gearing up for a world record attempt to spearhead the next phase of their Butterfly Appeal.
Safe and Sound have been working with two local businesses, Colleague Box and Mercia Image Print, to develop their plan to smash the current world record for the ‘largest display of butterfly replicas’.
The world record currently stands at 720 but organisers are planning to display 1000 professionally- printed butterfly images at the Derbion on Saturday, August 28.
Professor Karim Vahed who specialises in Entomology at the University of Derby, will first validate the authenticity of the species displayed – the Peacock, Purple Emperor, Small Tortoiseshell, Holly Blue and Common Brimstone – and carefully count and verify the paper replicas before the display is open to the public between 10 am and 4 pm.
His report, backed by independent reports and visual evidence of the event, will then be submitted to Guinness World Records who will decide if Safe and Sound have clinched the world record.
Ahead of the event and on the day, the public are invited to buy one of the paper replicas for £5 https://www.safeandsoundgroup.org.uk/2021-support-ideas/ which will be accompanied by a certificate showing they have been part of a world record attempt.
Throughout the day, there will also be children’s craft activities as well as the chance to find out more about the signs and dangers of child exploitation and how Safe and Sound can help.
Derby-based Safe and Sound first launched its Butterfly Appeal in June 2019 to enable it to expand the breadth and scope of its work.
The appeal has since garnered wide ranging support from individuals, groups and businesses across the city and county – enabling the charity to support more than 300 young people; 60 families and to engage with over 1,000 people to raise awareness of the dangers in the past two years alone.
These include children aged as young as seven upwards who are victims of or at risk of child exploitation which includes sexual exploitation, online grooming, county lines, trafficking, modern slavery and radicalisation.
New activity programmes made possible by support through the Butterfly Appeal have included outreach work, youth activities, family support and transitions work.
The next stage of the Butterfly Appeal will focus on such specialist work as psychological therapy programmes – identified as even more important due to the pressures on young people’s mental health services post lockdown.
CEO Tracy Harrison, a former senior police officer who joined the charity just before the launch of the Butterfly Appeal, said: “Our world record attempt is the perfect way to celebrate the success of the Butterfly Appeal two years down the line and to thank everyone who has supported us so far.
“On a personal note, I have always wanted to be in the Guinness Book of World Records and this is an opportunity for us and our supporters to be part of this achievement.
“The serious message behind this event is that young people are, today, at even greater danger of child exploitation.
“This is borne out in the fact that our workload has doubled over the pandemic as perpetrators have taken advantage of young people’s isolation and particularly their increased use of social media and gaming sites.
“Lack of privacy settings and lack of awareness about grooming and exploitation has made young people even more vulnerable to perpetrators looking to draw victims heinous sexual activity, drugs crime, modern slavery and radicalisation.”
Natalie Bamford, managing director of personalised giftbox company Colleague Box continued: “The display in the Derbion will be a strong visual reminder of why Safe and Sound chose the butterfly to signify their work.
“Despite the growing dangers of exploitation facing young people both online and in our local communities, we are extremely lucky to have a specialist local charity based here that helps young people and their families to build stronger wings and move forward with their lives.
“Safe and Sound is one of the key charities that we have supported since launching our company just over a year ago. We have helped them buy a minibus which is crucial to getting the charity back into local communities and I am so pleased that we have been able to support them with this fantastic world record attempt.”
Amanda Strong from Mercia Image Print is also an ambassador for Safe and Sound. She concluded: “Although there is obviously a serious message behind the event, we hope that the public will embrace the opportunity to be part of this local world record attempt.
“People can pledge as little as £5 online and then come down to the Derbion to collect their own paper butterfly and a certificate to show their involvement on Saturday, August 28.
“We are also offering businesses and individuals an A3 print of one of the beautiful butterflies from £50 which we will personalise for display in offices and homes.”
For more information about the world record attempt and how to support Safe and Sound, please visit https://www.safeandsoundgroup.org.uk/2021-support-ideas/
Specialist charity Safe and Sound has secured funding from the government’s expanded Holiday Activities and Food programme (HAF) to run a four-week programme for young people and families whose lives have been affected by child exploitation.
Thanks to HAF funding administered locally by Community Action, around 40 young people and 10 families will join a wide range of activities such as dance, boxing, table tennis, family cooking and youth club activities over the six week holidays.
A key part of the programme will be to ensure the young people, who are from some of the most deprived areas in the inner city, will receive a nutritious meal which will be provided by the Padley Group.
The summer activities will run alongside the one to one and group support that Safe and Sound’s specialist team currently provides for 99 children and young people who are victims of or at risk of child exploitation. This includes online grooming, sexual exploitation, County Lines, trafficking, modern slavery and radicalisation.
The charity is also supporting 22 families whose lives have been impacted by exploitation.
Safe and Sound chief executive Tracy Harrison explained: “The summer programme is a key part of our primary function which is to reduce risks and to keep children, young people, families and vulnerable adults safe.
“The focus will therefore be on building their confidence, resilience and overall wellbeing- whilst having fun.
“We are delighted to have this additional funding so that we can provide nutritious meals and healthy eating workshops through a partnership with the Padley Group.
“Most of the young people and families who we work with are from some of the most deprived areas in the city which increases their vulnerability to exploitation so ensuring they have a decent meal during the holidays is an important aspect of the programme.
“And involving the young people’s siblings and parents will help them come together, have fun and overcome the impact that exploitation has had on their family unit.”
For more information about the work of Safe and Sound and ways to support the charity’s ongoing Butterfly Appeal, please visit https://www.safeandsoundgroup.org.uk/
Safe and Sound, the Derbyshire based child exploitation charity, is supporting this summer’s NCS programme with a series of awareness raising sessions for young people.
Safe and Sound supports children and young people across Derbyshire who are victims of or at risk of child exploitation which includes online grooming, sexual exploitation, County Lines, Modern Slavery and trafficking as well as supporting their families and raising awareness of the issues in local communities.
Support workers from the charity have been invited by Derby County Community Trust to hold sessions for more than 250 local young people who have signed up to the NCS summer programme.
The sessions focus on emotional resilience, how their own lives have been affected by the pandemic and how this has increased young people’s vulnerability to exploitation.
Safe and Sound chief executive Tracy Harrison said: “Our workload has doubled during the past 18 months because the pandemic, and particularly periods of lockdown, has dramatically increased young people’s vulnerability to exploitation – particularly online grooming and by drugs gangs who are running County Lines.
“As well as supporting young people and families, an important part of our work is to raise awareness of the dangers that face any child or young person – regardless of their age, sex, cultural background or family circumstances.
“Our sessions as part of the NCS programme have therefore focused on helping young people realise the link between emotional resilience and vulnerability to exploitation.
“By raising awareness of the dangers facing young people in our own city and county, we hope the NCS graduates will be more confident to recognise, challenge and support others who are victims of or at risk of exploitation in their future lives.
Derby County Community Trust NCS Project Manager Emma Pilgrim continued: “Derby County Community Trust are thrilled to have a long-standing partnership with Safe and Sound, particularly through our NCS programme.
“Improving lives and communities through education is a key part of our charity’s mission, and the workshops that Safe and Sound deliver to our young people is vitally important.
“In teaching them important messages around their own and other’s safety, which forms part of the project’s central objectives, we are helping to set them up for their next steps in education, employment or training. We look forward to continuing our work alongside Safe and Sound in subsequent projects.”
For more information about Safe and Sound and how to support the work it does, please visit https://safeandsoundgroup.org.uk/
Derbyshire-born actor Molly Windsor, who is an ambassador for child exploitation charity Safe and Sound, was the guest of honour at a performance to celebrate an innovative creative project for local children and young people.
Safe and Sound teamed up with arts organisations Derby Theatre and Baby People to enable ten boys and girls to join the Youth Voice project as part of the charity’s work to help them overcome their experiences of child exploitation.
The young people chose equality and sexism as their subject matters and then worked with artists to create a rap and two dances which they performed to a small audience, including Molly Windsor.
The actor was inspired to get involved with Safe and Sound after starring in the television drama ‘Three Girls’ – based on the true stories of grooming and sexual abuse in Rochdale between 2008 and 2012.
She said: “The rap and dances were incredible. They were all really confident and it was my pleasure to present them all with a certificate and a Hope Box which Safe and Sound has created, sponsored by local businesses, to support young people further on moving on with their lives.
“I was particularly heartened to hear that one of the girls involved in the project found that watching ‘Three Girls’ had helped her come to terms with her own experiences of sexual exploitation. It was a real honour to have the chance to hear about how she is much more positive about her future having worked with Safe and Sound.”
Safe and Sound supports children and young people across Derbyshire who are victims of or at risk of child exploitation including online grooming, sexual exploitation, trafficking, drugs lines, modern slavery and radicalisation. The charity also supports the wider family and raises awareness in local communities of the dangers facing young people.
Safe and Sound youth worker Sally Littlewood added: “We started with a confidence building session and the artists from Derby Theatre and Baby People were inspirational in helping the young people to find their voice and translate their feelings and views into a rap and dances.
“Re-building a young person’s self-esteem and encouraging them to find their voice is so important in their transition from experiencing child exploitation and is something that we focus on across all the activities that the young people engage with.
“As the project developed, it was incredible to see their confidence grow and the quality of the work they produced and performed was amazing – so much so that one of the girls now has the chance to record the rap that they wrote with Baby People.”
To sponsor a Hope Box, please visit the new Safe and Sound website https://www.safeandsoundgroup.org.uk/2021-support-ideas/ where there is information about how else to support the charity’s work and a wide range of resources for parents, professionals and young people themselves.
Picture shows, from left: Laura Ryder (Derby Theatre), Joe Sheridan (Baby People), Molly Windsor and Sally Littlewood
Media enquiries: Sarah Jenkin-Jones, JJPR, Tel: 01332 515102/07951 945665; [email protected]