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It’s become something of an annual event for Andrea Splendori and Ross Thompson…

Pick a challenging run somewhere on the globe, and take it on with some fellow Greystonians so they can raise money for a worthy cause.

And have a damn good time.

This year is a little bit different though, thanks to that bastard Covid, with the guys realising that they’ll have to do their gruelling slog a little closer to home. Originally planned for April, the start date changed to Thursday, September 17th and instead of the Himalayas or the Mojave Desert, the run now begins at The Cove and ends three days later on Galway Bay.

“It’s not so much about the destination as the journey,” Andrea says with a wry smile. “And the journey here is spreading the good word on not only the great work of Crumlin Children’s Hospital but also A Lust For Life, who specialise in mental health awareness. These are the two charities we’ll be fundraising for with the run…”

Having set a target of €20,000, as of today, the guys have already raised over €17,878. Having a few more souls and soles than the usual foursome on the run may have helped that impressive total a tad.

Joining Andrea and Ross will be Colin Fulham, Karen Kelly, Sile Nolan, Patrik Albertsson, Toni Lovera, Chris O’Mahony, Chris Willoughy, Kevin Marshall, Keith McCabe, Liam Sweeney, Barry Dempsey, Mark Donnelly, George Coffey, Alan O’Connor and Ken Kennedy. “We’re also inviting people to join us for a few kilometres along the way, no matter how short a distance,” says Splendori. “It’s really about getting involved, in the run, the fundraising or, just as importantly, the conversation around mental health…”

The lads are quick to give a shout-out to the main sponsors for the Mindful West Run too – Kambukka Ireland. John Sisk and Sons and Microsoft Ireland – whilst also sending out thanks to Dell Financial Services and PJ Hegarty Constructions. “And a big thanks to Paddy and the gang at SuperValu too,” says Ross, “for providing us with food for the run…”

You can donate to the Mindful West Run here, or get involved by emailing info@socialfabric.ie.

In the meantime, we took afternoon tea at The Bitter Lemon with the guys to find out a little more…