My aim on race day is to get to the finish line...

Ahead of The Echo Women's Mini Marathon CHRIS DUNNE talks to Erika, from Cope Foundation about why she is taking part
My aim on race day is to get to the finish line...

Erika who is doing the Echo Women's Mini Marathon for Cope Foundation. Picture: Darragh Kane

Taking part in The Echo Women’s Mini Marathon for the first time this year will be Erika from Cope Foundation.

“This will be my first year getting involved in The Echo Women’s Mini-Marathon.

“I’m taking part because I love staying fit and active. I’m doing the race with my friends and family. I can’t wait,” says Erika.

“It will be so much fun to do the race together.”

Cope Foundation supports her.

“I attend Cope Foundation’s Ballyvolane, Community Hub,” says Erika. “The Community Hubs provide supports and opportunities for individuals using the service to determine their own journey in their lives.”

What is it like there?

“Every day is different in the Hub,” says Erika.

“The Hub in Ballyvolane supports me to be part of and included in my community. I also learn new skills.

“One day I might be learning how to cook one of my favourite meals. Another day I might be out and about with my friends doing various activities. I really enjoy it. I look forward to going to the Hub.”

What kind of other activities is Erika involved in?

“I love playing soccer,” she says.

“I love creating art and being with my friends in the Hub.”

How is the training coming along for the Mini-Marathon?

“I’m going for walks every evening,” says Erika.

She has it all mapped out.

“On race day I’ll probably do a mixture of running and walking!”

She’s also looking forward to the buzzing atmosphere at the start line.

“I’m most looking forward to taking on the race with my friends and the staff from the Hub.

“My family, friends and staff from the Hub will be on the sideline cheering me on!”

It’s a great achievement to finish the mini-marathon - is this an ambition of Erika’s?

“My aim on the day is definitely to finish the race,” she says.

“I don’t mind if I finish in first or last place. The most important thing is taking part. It is a brilliant day in the city.

“I can’t wait to cross the finish line with my friends.”

Will there be celebrations afterwards?

“I’m going to celebrate afterwards by going for dinner and drinks in the city,” says Erika.

“I know I’m going to be hungry after running and walking 6km. So I’ll be looking forward to relaxing afterwards.”

It is a good thing to support Cope and raise awareness about Cope and the work that they do?

“I’m so proud to be taking part in The Echo Women’s Mini-Marathon in aid of Cope Foundation,” says Erika.

“Cope does so much for me. I have learned a lot of skills and I’m more confident. I feel that I am more involved and part of my community and I feel included, which is so important.”

Cope supports people all over Cork city and county with an intellectual disability and/or autism to live ‘Your Life, Your Way’.

Events like The Echo Women’s Mini-Marathon are a great day for people supported by Cope Foundation, their families and staff to get involved and take on the race together.

If you would like to join Cope Founadation’s team for The Echo Women’s Mini-Marathon visit https//www.cope-foundation.ie

About Cope Foundation.

Cope Foundations supports over 2,800 children and adults of every ability to live ‘Your Live Your Way’. We work to enhance the lives of people with intellectual disability and/or autism, working in partnership with them, their families and local communities to provide a broad range of person centred services and support.

Visit www.copefoundation.ie

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