Travel professionals will take part in the Virtual Virgin Money London Marathon on Sunday (October 3) to raise funds for Abta LifeLine.
Trudie Clements, Abta LifeLine director, said: “Every week, I get requests that range from people who have lost their jobs and can’t put food on the table, pay their bills or even need clothes to attend job interviews; to more complex personal circumstances which may range from bereavement to mental health support.
“After an incredibly disruptive 18 months for the travel industry, this marathon is a brilliant example of how community groups and volunteers can help travel peers in desperate need.
“This fundraiser plays a crucial role in enabling LifeLine to continue to offer support that can be lifechanging to many. I would like to thank each and every runner and the people who so kindly donate to their pages.”
Team Avis Budget Group will be walking the marathon distance together throughout the day and have been meeting regularly to walk 10 miles to train.
Sophie Nelson, travel and partnerships manager, put the group together after volunteering for LifeLine for nine months.
“I have seen first-hand how instrumental Abta LifeLine is in supporting our travel colleagues in need. LifeLine is the heart of our industry: donations help pay for essential bills to keep families in their homes and help fund vital mental health support,” she said.
Also taking part in the virtual marathon is Sara Grieve, a financial administrator at Abta’s sustainability certification programme, Travelife.
“When I began training for this marathon, I was a beginner, I was completely out of breath after 90 seconds running,” she said.
“But I want to be able to provide LifeLine with more funds to help people in need; I realise the end of furlough will mean even more job losses.”
Giles Hawke, chief executive of Cosmos Tours and Avalon, has never run a full marathon but has trained by walking, running or cycling daily.
“The travel industry has been good to me for almost 30 years and others have lost their livelihoods and jobs through no fault of their own. This marathon feels like the right thing to do to help them as best as I can,” he said.
Colleagues in the travel industry can donate through the following fundraising pages:
Team Avis Budget Group’s fundraising page.
Sara Grieve’s fundraising page.
Giles Hawke’s fundraising page.