February 04, 2017
EVENT: 2017 Boston Marathon
EVENT DATE: Apr 17, 2017
DAY TO GO
Hello beautiful humans! Thank you for your time and interest in visiting my Samaritans Marathon Team fundraising page. I am humbled to have the privilege of representing Samaritans during the 2017 Boston Marathon!
For those who are unfamiliar with Samaritans, it is a non-profit organization whose mission is to prevent suicide and reduce the stigma surrounding suicide. They offer many services including, but not limited to, a 24-hour hour helpline and grief support for those who have lost loved ones to suicide.
As many of you know, I served as a helpline volunteer during my four years at Boston College. I served at Samaritans through both the PULSE Program for Service Learning, a yearlong philosophy and theology class that incorporates service into its curriculum, and 4Boston, a student-run service organization that combines service with weekly reflection. I was also the Samaritans councilperson in the 4Boston program as a senior, meaning that I oversaw a group of student volunteers and led weekly reflections for the group to discuss their experiences at Samaritans.
If someone were to ask me why I decided to run the marathon for Samaritans, I honestly wouldn't be able to offer one main reason. So with that, I offer three reasons. I ain't sorry.
First, Samaritans was, and continues to be, a major source of my identity. I think its important to note that while I admire Samaritans for what they do, I admire them more for how they do it. Their success stems from their culture, one built on unconditional support and non-judgment. Samaritans excels at what they do because they are able to harness human empathy and channel it in such a profound way to serve every single individual they encounter, suicidal or not. And they are able to use something that we as human beings are all capable of to bring about social change. It is these values that I hope to embody, represent, and advocate for as a member of the team.
Second, and admittedly on a more selfish note, I want to finish my marathon. My first marathon was the Boston Marathon in April 2013, the year of the bombings. I suffered from severe cramps around Mile 13 and fought my way passed Mile 25 before I was stopped by spectators. I remember collapsing to the ground in pain, confusion, and sorrow. But I quickly felt the support of those around me and witnessed it firsthand as I walked with fellow students and other members of the Boston community five miles back to BC. I want to finish what I started that day for myself and for everyone who was impacted one way or another.
And finally, on an even more personal note, I am running as an individual who identifies as LGBTQ. LGBTQ individuals are statistically more at-risk of suicide. As a sophomore, I began to struggle immensely to comprehend this part of my identity. I have been lucky to feel support from friends and family, but not everyone can say the same. I understand the feelings that can drive people to engage in self-destructive behavior. I run to stand in love and solidarity with anyone who is striving to be a more authentic self.
If you've made it this far, I appreciate you staying with me. I encourage you to browse the profiles of the other incredible runners on my team as we all have a unique story to tell. If you would like to learn more about Samaritans or get in touch with me, feel free to send me an email at email@example.com. I will try to post pictures and updates as I get into my training.
From the bottom of my heart, thank you for all your love and support!