A team of staff from Derwen College will be raising money for Derwen College Charity by taking part in the 13.1-mile Lake Vyrnwy Half Marathon on Sunday, 8th September.

A team of 10, representing the college near Oswestry, have been in training for the challenging run around the picturesque Mid Wales lake. Their motivation is to raise funds to support students with special educational needs and disabilities (SEND) in their learning, work placements, care and wellbeing.

The team is made of staff members Liv Evans, Paul Moss, Sarah Bennett, Rosie Keaney, Pete Williams, Steve Evans, Ffiona Lewis, Eluned Watson and Siobhan Williams along with Siobhan’s sister Erin Fletcher.

The group have all taken on the running challenge for different reasons. Some are hoping for personal best times, whilst others are simply wanting to complete the course in one piece! They are all brought together in the shared goal of supporting Derwen College students through the charity.

Learning Support Assistant Rosie Keaney from Oswestry, says she hasn’t done any serious running since being forced to run in cross country in primary school.

She says: “I want to prove that you don’t have to be super fit or ‘into’ running to take part in a half marathon. I’d also love to prove to myself that I can do it. My motivation is to raise money for Derwen to put something back into the wonderful place where I work, and give our students more opportunities. I love my role working in Horticulture as I get to be outside all day every day and teach the students how to love and cherish the wonderful world of plants. The students bring a positive and exciting energy and are always able to brighten the darkest of days!”

Learning Support Assistant Olyvia Evans also admits to having little running experience since leaving school. Though she completed the Lake Vyrnwy Half two years ago for Derwen College.

“I am taking part again as it’s a great opportunity to raise money to help benefit our students and the college.  Signing up to events like this allows me to challenge myself and gives me something to work toward,” she says.

Hair and beauty stylist Erin Fletcher is running with her sister Siobhan Williams, who is a teacher at Derwen College. Erin, from LlansantffraidymMechain, is a mobile stylist and also works at Sophisticutz Hair and Beauty in Shawbury, near Shrewsbury.

She says: “Knowing that I have an event to train for and that I’m raising money keeps me motivated when I have a busy lifestyle. My sister is a teacher at Derwen and after taking part in the college’s Mother’s Day 10k Sponsored Walk I thought it would be nice to join in with the half marathon too.  Although I do not work at Derwen College the opportunities and activities the students take part in and the fundraising events are all positive and great for the schools community and lifestyle.”

Derwen College fundraiser Anna Evans said she was over the moon to have so many college staff and supporters sign up for the Half Marathon, and is hoping that the team will raise a total of £1000.

She said: “The money raised for Derwen College Charity will go towards supporting Derwen College students in their learning, work placements, care, accommodation and wellbeing. Every donation helps, however small it seems, so please support the team in their efforts on our fundraising page.”


Find out more about our runners’ individual stories at www.derwen.ac.uk/blog

Pictured: Olyvia Evans, Eluned Watson, Paul Moss and Siobhan Williams try out their new Derwen College Charity t-shirts for size.

Erin Fletcher and her sister Siobhan Williams celebrate after finishing Liverpool Half Marathon in May.