A WOMAN who decided to take on the Great South Run just a fortnight before the race has presented a cheque for £1,111 to Hounds for Heroes.
Karen Font-Garcia, a life coach and celebrant from Fareham, joined more than 20,000 people racing 10mi around Portsmouth in last month’s race after chosing the armed forces charity to raise money for.
The ex-Royal Navy officer said: ‘I wanted to raise money for a worthy cause.
‘The moment I heard about Hounds for Heroes, it resonated with me deeply.
‘Being ex-armed forces with a great love for animals, what better solution than to run for a charity that combined both.
‘I knew I had to do something for this incredibly worthwhile charity and the excellent work it does.’
Karen crossed the finish line in 2 hours, 38 minutes and 4 seconds after only signing up for the run a two weeks before.
‘I decided spontaneously to participate in the Great South Run,’ she said.
‘I knew I had the discipline to succeed and turn the experience into something incredible that would benefit others.’
The money Karen raised will go towards training labrador puppies and golden retrievers to become assistance dogs for injured ex-armed forces and ex-emergency services personnel.
Karen said she was overwhelmed by the support she received.
She said: ‘By the day of the run, I had raised £460 through the power of Facebook after only two weeks of fundraising.’
Karen presented the cheque at the Hounds for Heroes Headquarters in Petersfield.
A talk was given by Allen Parton, the founder of Hounds for Heroes.
An ex-Royal Navy serviceman, Mr Parton founded the charity after being injured in action himself.
Karen now plans to do a charity abseil down the Spinnaker Tower in Portsmouth in April next year.
n To donate to Karen’s appeal, visit justgiving.com/karenfontgarcia.
For more information about Hounds for Heroes visit the website houndsforheroes.com.