Distance challenges London Marathon runner

Venkat Raman

A Starship Trooper is participating in the London Marathon to raise funds for Starship New Zealand but competition from other participants and distance from home are among the greatest challenges that confront the young woman.

Emily Rushton, an Auckland based educator and nurse, also known as ‘Starship Trooper’ hopes that the members of the Indian community with whom she has lived and worked for several years in East and South Auckland would read this story and offer help.

“It is hard to raise money from half way around the world (most participants in the London Marathon do so for charity) and hence any donations by people or businesses are welcome. I would work with any business on a promotion idea that they may have for a donation. I am putting in many hours every day to train but even more for fundraising. Our children in Starship are from all backgrounds. These children and their families deserve the best,” Emily said.

Target & Performance

Her target is to raise NZ$5000 but at the time of writing a report for us from Europe, she had collected less than $500.

Her forthcoming self-assigned tasks include a ‘Whole Week of Silence’ (which she admitted would be hard!), teaching the Haka to the British, taking a winter dip in the freezing sea and dying her hair red and purple (Starship Colours).

Inspiring Moment

While Emily has always been keen to help Starship raise money, the idea of participating in the London Marathon occurred when she heard from a man she was housesitting in Bangkok that his favourite moment was ‘doing the London Marathon.’

“The amazing feeling of achievement after months of hard work and fundraising was the best thing he ever felt. I found out that I could run for Starship and received a positive response the same night. My Welsh partner also received a similar response from Britain to raise funds for UK Child Care.

Vulnerable Children

Emily’s heart goes out to children for whom she has previously worked in different capacities and is keen to support their wellbeing in every possible way.

“Children are really vulnerable, they never deserve to be in hospital, nothing can ever be through their own fault and sick children cause huge stress and sadness within families. We cannot treat children the same way we do in adult wards. Children are often frightened and have to go through huge amounts of pain without realising why. It takes a lot more time but is absolutely necessary,” Emily said.

Personal experience

Starship looked after Emily when she was a young girl. She was treated with care, provided with the right information in the right language and helped her through with music and other therapies. She firmly believes that the Starship Foundation supports children with “what needs to be done in the most professional but approachable manner.”

However, she believes that more children need help.

Wrong Priorities

“Kiwi children are getting a raw deal at the moment. There is lot of attention drawn to children not having food to eat at school and other issues. I feel that we need to make sure we are there to support them in all ways we can, especially in health. Starship treats children from all over New Zealand and works to ensure that they get what they deserve despite their background,” Emily said.

You can follow Emily Rushton’s progress and dares on www.facebook.com/marathonforkids

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