It’s hard enough training for one marathon. It’s unbelievably challenging to train for 30 marathons in 30 days. But having understandably the need to postpone the event earlier this year due to the coronavirus pandemic and reschedule – and then to keep on training throughout the intervening months – is mind-blowing.
But that’s what Danny Watson, our Director of Sailing, has faced as the countdown begins to his rescheduled challenge to run 30 marathons in 30 consecutive days.
So what made him carry on getting up each day to keep pounding the pavements?
It’s the work of CatZero that has pushed him on… and on.
“People may question my drive, what makes me rise to the sound of my 4.30am alarm call six days a week, to pull on my running gear and finish a hot drink of lemon and ginger before opening the door into the dark for another run. The answer will be understood by all of those who are associated with CatZero,” says Danny.
“As a child, I was privileged to be raised in a family environment, which was happy and secure. Perhaps naively there are many, like me, who grow into adulthood under the assumption that everyone enjoys this similar background. It is when you immerse yourself into the work of an organisation such as ours, that you open your eyes to a reality that is far different.
“There are so many individuals and families out there who need additional support to help them step on to an alternative and better pathway, and I am extremely proud of the work we do here at CatZero to assist that progression, which not only helps the family unit, but also inputs into positive community change.
“Working with vulnerable families has affected me personally, especially as I now have a family. I have used the principles we have developed in CatZero in changing my own life. I am passionate about the work we do with children, young people, and their families – creating lasting change,” says Danny.
So here are the key reasons why CatZero has spurred Danny on – and how you can help continue this vital work:
- CatZero: launched 11 years ago to deliver lasting personal change to the lives of hundreds of people in some of the most challenging areas across both sides of the Humber.
- The charity aims for a 65 per cent success rate in getting course participants into employment, education or training (hard outcomes). This success rate makes it one of the most effective charities of its kind across the country.
- CatZero’s 72ft challenge yacht is used as a unique ‘floating classroom’ to inspire and instil lasting personal change. Participants undertake short and long (8-day) sails overcoming challenge, lack of sleep, sea sickness, and learning to work together in a tough environment with no outside influences. It cements their life-change.
- Once CatZero: Always CatZero, the charity continues to be there for its past participants – years and months down the line, they may need the charity’s help again.
- Families approaching crisis are helped by the charity’s Full Families programme. CatZero supports and effects intergenerational change. This work is needed now more than ever as the unprecedented challenges presented by the continued coronavirus threat include high unemployment levels, fewer opportunities in certain work sectors, increased loneliness and isolation, and increased vulnerability. Lone parents, young people, the long-term unemployed and military veterans are also supported.
- The support of everyone changes lives. Together we can unite to support and help rejuvenate communities in the long-term.
Donate on Danny’s 30in30 Virgin Money Giving page
Follow Danny’s journey on Instagram: dannywatsoncatzero
You can keep in touch with Danny, who is continuing his training regime, on our blogs section of the website