About the Park: Erindale Park is the largest park in the city of Mississauga (west of Toronto). The park offers walking trails, fishing, canoeing and spectacular views of the Credit River and tall ravines. The park is inviting to bird watchers, photographers and anyone at all who enjoys getting back to nature. This area of the Credit River also supports runs of Rainbow and Brown Trout, Chinook, Coho and Atlantic Salmon.
About Larry Dearlove
Larry is a marathon runner whose life was changed nine years ago when he found out about child sex trafficking in Cambodia. Larry lives in Ontario, Canada with his lovely wife Gloria and their two daughters. You can read his thoughts about God, anti-sex trafficking and running through his blog.
The idea of the Ratanak 5KM Walkathon came in 2010 when I prepared for running in Mississauga Marathon. I noticed my estimated finishing time would allow me to qualify for the Boston Marathon. At the time I thought of organizing an event that could allow more participants to raise funds on their own, thinking I could possibly use some of the Boston publicity to help create a buzz. I settled on a small 5 km race and waited. I did not have to wait long as I have come to know someone who organized for a race to fundraise for building wells in Africa through an advertisement in a running magazine. She shared her wisdom with me how to organize race like this. I also shared with her the work of Ratanak in Cambodia. She was very moved by the plight of the children as she also has two young daughters. I was hoping one day she would be the one organizing for this Ratanak 5km Walkathon. After waiting for a long time, I realized she was not going to let me off the hook from organizing this walkathon. Fast forward to now, we find ourselves putting together our 6th annual 5KM Walkathon.
“So with nothing more than a pair of running shoes, I’m taking a run at the big and frightening problem of the billion-dollar-a-year sale of children. And, I have found peace and tranquility through training in my ravine. In trying to bring freedom, I have experienced freedom myself.” – Running the Good Race, Larry Dearlove
Why $25 252?
Last year’s goal was $20 052: the 52 was in relation to my running in kilometres, and more importantly, we believe it was offering Jesus our five loaves and two fish. In a span of a few short weeks, approximately 300 people raised over $42 000. We had a lot of positive events happen to influence the amount of money raised. Neil Boron of WDCX walked from Buffalo, NY, Mississauga’s MP Wladyslaw Lizon mentioned the walk in the House of Commons, and many other examples.
I mentioned before that I am conservative so staying true to my character, I arrived at our goal.
I took last year’s original estimate $20 000 and multiplied it by 26 percent. The 26 is a healthy increase and also the number of miles I will run in The Pittsburgh Marathon this spring. I then added the number 52 to the end as my three long races this year will end up totaling 52 miles.
The total I arrived at was $25 252.
I am reminded of an interview I did many years ago in which I was asked the question how much money I hoped to raise in an upcoming marathon. My answer was “not enough” for whatever amount I raise, children are still being exploited in Cambodia, so I am not raising enough.
I went on to tell the interviewer that whatever amount I raise will be more than if I had stayed at home and did nothing. We offer Jesus our 5 loaves and 2 fish. In the end, He decides what the final numbers are to be. Whatever money and awareness we raise is more than if we had stayed at home and did nothing. The money raised allows Ratanak International to help as many hurting Cambodians as possible.
I think in some ways our society is a lot like an old image I have stored away in my memory. I see the picture of the three monkeys with one covering his eyes (see no evil), one covering his ears (hear no evil), and one covering its mouth (speak no evil).
My blessing to those who decide to participate in this fundraiser on June 17, 2017: