A local teacher was inspired to run the London Marathon last month after receiving valuable help from a charity in supporting one of her pupils who suffers from Downs Syndrome and autism.
Celia Grossett, 31, who completed the 26.2 mile course in an impressive four hours, 28 minutes and 18 seconds, ran the marathon in an effort to raise money for Sense – a charity who help people with deaf-blindness and complex disabilities to experience the world.
It was a special achievement for the Early Years teacher and running for Sense had a personal connection as her experiences with a boy who has Down Syndrome and autism in her class provided the inspiration she needed.
Celia was introduced to the work Sense does while on a training day when a multi-sensory impaired consultant teacher helped support Celia with her pupil.
Celia said: “Without services and support like Sense, I would have struggled to support my pupil. I’m running for Sense who help teachers like me and families who have children with complex disabilities.
“As an Early Years Teacher, working with young children of all different abilities has made me realise how important it is for us to be able to communicate and to be understood.”
Celia’s pupils provided further encouragement and came to support her on the day of the marathon. “Lots of pupils came to watch me run. They even made their own signs and t-shirts saying ‘Go Celia!’ It really boosted my motivation knowing that they were coming to watch me run. I was delighted to be able to give them a high five as I ran past,” Celia added.
Celia set a fundraising target of £1,700 prior to the marathon through car boot sales, cake sales, raffles and competitions and even held her very own quiz night. Celia went well beyond her initial target by raising an outstanding £1,971.
Sense chief executive, Richard Kramer, also praised her commitment to the charity. He said: “Running the marathon is an incredible personal achievement, but by choosing to support Sense, Celia will also help to improve the lives of people with complex disabilities. On behalf of everyone connected to Sense, congratulations.”
Those who wish to donate to Celia’s cause can do so at https://www.justgiving.com/fundraising/celiagrossett