Jami attracted its highest number of London Marathon runners this year, who helped raise almost £30,000 to support our vital services in the community for young people and adults affected by mental illness, and their families.
It was the first year that Jami had the support of a corporate team, when seven employees from VAT IT, a leading service provider in tax reclaim and compliance, ran in aid of the charity. Two of the participants flew all the way from South Africa to join their fellow co-workers. Among them was Jonathan ‘Peps’ Pepper, who finished in an impressive three hours and 28 minutes – the second fastest among all the Jami runners. It was Jonathan’s fourth marathon, having completed the Amsterdam one in 2021, and Edinburgh and Berlin in 2022. However, it was his first time running in support of Jami.
Jonathan said: “I went through a very difficult period in my life last year, which I am still working through, and my mental health took a massive knock. I wanted to raise awareness of a charity that resonated with my personal experiences.” Although Jonathan says he loves the training process, he admits that running a marathon takes discipline, commitment and time. Nevertheless, he believes the challenges and sacrifices were well worth it. “It has been an honour and a privilege working with Jami. Mental health issues are often overlooked and ignored and often people do not know where to turn. Jami looks to remove the stigma and to provide a comforting environment to receive mental health support. I have no doubt that Jami has saved countless lives and I look forward to continuing to support the charity in the future.”
Daniel Walters, who chose to support Jami despite winning a ballot place, raised a whopping £8,000, which he says he owes to the generosity of many of his friends, family and work colleagues. It was his first marathon and he finished in four hours and 15 minutes. Daniel says that he discussed the choice of who to raise money for with his family. “We all agreed it should be Jami because of the vital support it provides to the community and because of the need to raise awareness about poor mental health, which is often overlooked as a serious illness.” He added: “Running and training for a marathon strengthens your own mental wellbeing, so to be able to use this to support others is incredibly inspiring and fulfilling.”
Not far behind Daniel was Brian Balkin, who completed the race in five hours and two minutes.