Keeley steps up for fundraiser
ARE you ready to go that extra mile for the Smileathon?
The biggest single fundraiser ever to take place for charities in North East Lincolnshire is being planned for this year – and there are a host of incentives if you get involved.
And forecasting a good event is Grimsby-born weather presenter Keeley Donovan.
As reported, Smileathon is the first ever sponsored run in our area where all the money raised will go to eight local charities, which cover a whole range of fundraising causes, from the elderly to animal care.
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It is hoped between £10,000 and £50,000 will be raised from the £5 entry fee and sponsorship, with not a penny of the cash going out of the local area.
No matter what the weather is on the big day – Sunday, September 9 – you can hop, skip, jump, walk or run along Cleethorpes seafront, and there is plenty of time for you to get involved.
Keeley, who works for BBC Look North, said: "I'm a sucker for animals so when I saw The Ark among the charities benefiting, I knew I had to be involved.
"The charities are all really good causes; it's difficult for the small local organisations to be heard over larger charities."
Keeley has undertaken charity work in the past, including Race For Life. She also donated clothes to the Grimsby Telegraph's Dress For Success campaign for the Women's Refuge in the town.
She began her presenting career aged 14 on a local cable channel. After leaving the Humberston School, she studied at Franklin College and later at the Grimsby Institute.
But she doesn't follow in the athletic footsteps of her dad, Terry, and grandfather Don, who both played for Grimsby Town.
She said: "I'm the total opposite. I'm really unfit and will probably struggle to run the full distance at the Smileathon but knowing I'm doing it for a good cause will drive me to finish.
"Most of the family are willing to get involved. It will let us raise more money and have more fun.
"It's only 5k. You don't even have to run – you can just walk. It won't take much time out your day and can help a lot of people.
"It's not a bad way to spend a Sunday morning, taking a walk along the seafront and doing it for a good cause."
And, making a weather forecast, she added: "It will be nice if it's sunny, but the rain will keep us all cool.
"Hopefully by September we will have clear skies."
Oasis Health Club, in Grimsby, is offering those taking part in the Smileathon a free five-day pass to its gym, swimming pool and host of exercise classes.
General manager Tracey Mills said: "It's important to support local charities and the local community.
"For those taking part in the Smileathon, it's important to stay healthy.
"Do exercise before the event to get you ready. Make sure you keep well hydrated and have a good breakfast like porridge, which is a good energy source."
The pass can be used before or after the big event. To claim it, go to the club, in Orwell Street, with your Smileathon entry number.