#WomenwithImpact - Karina, Co. Dublin

Hello I’m Karina and I have been chosen to represent Dublin in the Vhi Women’s Mini Marathon #WomenwithImpact campaign 2019. I’m thrilled to have been selected and get to share my story and how it all came around to entering the mini marathon as well has why I choose St Francis hospice as my charity.

 

Where it began.

 

In 2011 I did my first 10k Women’s Mini Marathon. At the time, I just did it to help raise money for charity as my mother had passed away in November 2010 and I wanted to give something back. I did my next one in 2011. However It wasn’t until 2017 I did my next one and when I completed it I said to my friend every year from now on I’m going to try get better on my times just to push myself a little. I started off by just doing a 20 minute walk every few days now I walk an hour 5 to 6 days a week and try get into a jog for about 10 to 15 minutes. I am not an avid jogging but I do try, a little a day can go a long way.

 

My drive for 5. (Medals that is 😉)

 

In 2018 my eldest brother Paul was going through a rare cancer and it had impacted on his ability to walk and had to get around in a wheelchair. Yet even though all he was going through, he was determined that he would walk properly again one day. He was admitted into St Francis hospice in Blanchardstown and after being there for some time getting physio and some well-deserved rest, I said I’m going to do the mini marathon for you bro, and for every step I take, its two for you. He was delighted and helped me raise money for the hospice who I chose as my charity. Paul was still in the hospice the day I did the mini marathon. When I completed it I went up to him with my medal and said this belongs to you. He was delighted and said how proud our mam would have been that I not only completed it but done better on my time. As we sat talking I said jokingly, I’ll get better next year.

 

Unfortunately in September 2018 my brother Paul passed away. The staff in the hospice where so fantastic and as Paul was there for over 6 months we became very fond of the staff and could see the impact these guys had on the lives of the patients and their families.

 

St Francis hospice is not just a place where our loved ones go to pass away. They have many Facilities that include day care, physiotherapy, relaxation as well as having a small salon to make their patients feel better in themselves. Before my brother passed away, he attended St Francis hospice day care where he would go once a week and meet people who were going through life changing illnesses and did Art (classes) as well as using the above facilities I have mentioned. This is what the fundraising money goes towards as well as other areas within the hospice.

 

As this year began, I wanted to keep my promise to my brother and continue doing the Vhi Women’s Mini Marathon so when I saw the post for applications to represent my county for an ambassador program for the campaign #Womenwithimpact I submitted my story. I never thought I’d be picked as I’m sure 100s of applications went forward but I am delighted to have been selected. I’m sure my story will have hit home for some people as they may have gone through a similar experience as myself or are currently going through it. My focus is to beat my time even if it’s only by a minute and to raise as much funds as possible for St Francis hospice.

 

 

Triona Driscoll