A Pool Academy staff member with Crohn’s Disease is set to run the London Marathon to show students anything is possible.
Phil Jones, school ITC Network Manager - aka Head Geek, is hoping to raise thousands of pounds for Crohn’s and Colitis UK charity as well as be an inspiration.
Mr Jones, who was diagnosed 18 years ago, has never run a marathon before but is already training for the big event in April.
He has also roped in school mascot, Buzz the Bear, to help him raise awareness for his chosen charity.
He said: “Running a marathon is something I have always wanted to do. I want to show students that even if you suffer from a condition such as Crohn’s nothing can stop you from doing what you really want to do.
“I was diagnosed with the disease when I was at university. Sometimes we have students at Pool Academy diagnosed with it too. Diagnoses are often given to people when they are either in their 20s or when they are 13, 14 or 15 years old. It is a really difficult time for them to find out because it is awkward enough being a teenager without having Crohn’s symptoms to deal with too.”
Mr Jones hopes to raise more than £2,000 for Crohn’s and Colitis UK and will be putting on a number of fundraising events in the future.
He said: “I have had various reactions from people when they find out I will be running a marathon. Some are impressed, some just think it is hilarious but mostly everyone is very supportive.
“I'm taking my good friend Buzz the Bear with me for luck and inspiration. He's been on some big adventures already, including going to space twice, so despite his small legs I think he will be up to the task.
“I started training in September and I have already done eight miles for my longest run. I go out three or four times a week and I am feeling good.”
There is currently no cure for Crohn’s. About 300,000 people in the UK have conditions and more than half are diagnosed when young.
The London Marathon will be taking place on April 22, 2018.
To sponsor Mr Jones visit http://www.virginmoneygiving.com/phil-jones-london-marathon