“Newcastle University remains committed to the principles of the Jubilee Debt Campaign which Martin Dent did so much to promote. We have made Social Renewal one of our Societal Challenge Themes which incorporates the spirit of social justice at the heart of the Jubilee Debt Campaign.”
So wrote the University’s Vice-Chancellor, Professor Chris Brink, and its Registrar, Dr John Hogan, in a message for the Memorial Service of Dr Martin Dent OBE, one of the Co-Founders of the Jubilee debt movement, at Keele University in June.
This commitment was on full public display on Sunday 7th September, when 46 runners participated in the Great North Run, a half-marathon, as members of Jubilee Debt Campaign’s ‘Drop the Debt & Stop AIDS’ team. The Run is the greatest mass-participation event in the world and it made history this year as the first in the world to have the millionth runner cross the finishing line. [Unhappily, she wasn’t ‘one of us’!]
Most of the team turned up for the traditional ‘pre-run photo-call’ and greatly appreciated the participation of Professor Phil Taylor, the Director of the University’s Institute for Sustainability, representing the leadership of the University, and Claire Boothman, President of the Students’ Union. Sarah-Jayne Clifton, the Director of Jubilee Debt Campaign, also participated and intends to join the team as a runner next year. Many team members also made their way to meet Dr David Golding CBE, who organises the team, at the finish, for their ‘shattered but triumphant’ photo’s.
David says: “It was very good to have several overseas members this year. They included Professor Giorgio Fazio, of the Law School, whose brother Giulio came across from Italy for the Run, and Katerina Deligiania, a Masters student in the School, who’s a veteran of ‘the real thing’ – the Classic Athens Marathon!”
The team is in its 12th year and has raised over £152,500, not including the current year, for Jubilee Debt Campaign, the Stop AIDS Campaign and British aid agencies (each runner chooses his or her own agency) for their work with those living with HIV/AIDS and the care of AIDS orphans.
1. The Drop the Debt/Stop AIDS team is sponsored by Jubilee Debt Campaign and NE-CAP, and its Patrons are the Vice-Chancellor, Professor Chris Brink; Professor Chris Day, Provost of Medical Sciences; Claire Boothman, President of NUSU; and Dr Joan Harvey, President of UCU.
2. Very generous concessions are offered to the team’s student runners and last year £683 was paid out in rebates for entry fees, without using a penny of the money raised in sponsorship! Anyone wishing to contribute to this year’s concessions can do so by at: https://mydonate.bt.com/fundraisers/davidgolding2
3. All university runners were provided with regular briefings; a training seminar and schedule provided by Andrew Coulson of the Sports Centre; a social at which advice was given to first-timers by the Team Captain, Professor David Leat, and others; and photo-opportunities.
4. The initiative has been widely praised both within the university and nationally. Professor Chris Brink, the Vice-Chancellor, has described it as “A credit to our institution”, and Professor Sir George Alberti, former President of the Royal College of Physicians, says that it’s “The sort of intelligently compassionate response I applaud”. Oxfam has stated that, “It is fabulous what you are achieving to lift people out of poverty!” Similarly, “Newcastle University has been hugely important to Jubilee Debt Campaign. Your team in the Great North Run is one of our major sources of funding” (Nick Dearden, formerly Director of JDC).
5) David Golding, the team’s organiser, did the Run in 2010 – “for the first and last time, to celebrate my 70th year”.
Before the Run
After the Run