Alfie Grice was born with a rare birth defect that means he has severe developmental and learning difficulties.
His dad, Mark, tells us how important parkrun has been for Alfie, and the special moments they have experienced together as a family in their local park.
My son Alfie, aged six, was born with ACC (Agenesis of the corpus callosum) which means the centrepiece connecting the two parts of the brain fails to develop during pregnancy. As a result, Alfie has severe developmental and learning difficulties as well as behavioural issues.
Recently, Shrewsbury parkrun in the UK, hosted an event to encourage individuals with learning disabilities to take part in physical activity. On the day Alfie helped marshal alongside me, as I am part of the core volunteer team.
Alfie had great fun cheering and clapping everyone on the day which including more than 60 individuals with learning difficulties and their families.
Since then, Alfie has taken part in junior parkrun events along with his older sister Mollie, who also regularly volunteers. The great thing about parkruns is the Tail Walker role, so we know each week there will always be a volunteer walking the course.
The 2k distance is still quite far for Alfie to manage at this stage due to his condition, so we usually combine our junior parkrun with volunteering as the Tail Walker.
We walk most of the route, but the excitement on his face when he is cheered over the finish line by the other volunteers is clear to see!
Thank you parkrun for giving me moments like this.
Caroline Kennedy tells us about the integral part Templemore parkrun has played in her cancer recovery journey, and breaking that 35 minute barrier. On the last weekend in June 2017, I became very ill and was given a bowel cancer diagnosis just a few weeks later. The chemotherapy followed, culminating in me undergoing extensive surgery…
Name: Brighid Smyth Age: 54 Occupation: Head of Corporate Communication, Vhi Local parkrun: St Anne’s parkrun Number of parkruns completed: 83 in 16 locations How did you get involved in parkrun? I ran my first parkrun on the 28 September 2013. At the time I was training for the 2013 Dublin City Marathon…