A multi-award-winning solidarity-through-sport movement founded in Cork and proudly supported by Cork City Council will bring over 1,700 people to the virtual start line of the Cork City Marathon on Sunday, June 6th.
The Sanctuary Runners has built a team of 1,700 people who will take part across the world from Tokyo to Paris and Cork and on to San Francisco.
While many will take on the full or half marathon distance the majority will run, jog or walk a symbolic relay leg of 8.5 kilometers in what’s being dubbed the ‘Light at the end of the (Jack Lynch) Tunnel Run’.
Founder of the Sanctuary Runners Graham Clifford explains why this run is taking place: “Each year with the great support of Cork City Council we enter a large team in the marathon but because of Covid19 we had to think a bit differently this year. The response from people across the world has been amazing. We have people running in Vietnam, groups in New Zealand and Abu Dhabi. We have runners in Zimbabwe, China and Brazil and all across Europe and the USA with a large group in San Francisco being the final runners to take part on Sunday. And of course, runners, joggers and walkers all across Ireland. While all are taking part remotely their hearts will be on the streets of Cork on Sunday.”
And around 250 asylum seekers and refugees will also take part at the weekend.
The Sanctuary Runners was established in January 2018 to enable Irish residents to run alongside, and in solidarity with, people living in Ireland’s Direct Provision system.
Given the virtual nature of the run those taking part will do so individually or in small pods mindful of Covid19 restrictions on exercising outdoors.
The Lord Mayor of Cork, Cllr Joe Kavanagh, said: “It’s fantastic to see such a huge number of people running together though apart this year. We’re especially delighted to have so many Sanctuary Runners taking part worldwide – it’s particularly heart-warming to see Cork City’s sister cities take part! It truly is the Marathon for Everyone! Best of luck to everyone running, jogging or walking over the weekend. We look forward to welcoming you back onto the streets of Cork for next year’s Cork City Marathon.”