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ASB partnering with Youthline at ASB Christchurch Marathon

Contributor:
Fuseworks Media
Fuseworks Media

Thousands of people from across New Zealand and overseas will be supporting Youthline when they cross the finish at this year’s ASB Christchurch Marathon.

As well as collecting a medal for completing the event, every entrant who runs an extra 20 metres past the finish line to a secondary finish will have ASB donate $5 to Youthline on their behalf.

With race organisers expecting more than 4,000 entrants, the partnership is likely to raise about $20,000 - a contribution Youthline chief executive Shae Ronald says will be a huge boost for the organisation.

"We’re always looking to grow our volunteer base but training these volunteers to be able to handle the stressful situations they may find themselves in is a process that requires investment. ASB’s generosity will enable us to train up to 25 new volunteers which equates to about 500 conversations each month. Which is a lot," says Ronald.

"Demand for our services, and the intensity of what we are working with continues to increase and this funding will have a significant and meaningful impact for us, and the people we help on a daily basis," says Ronald.

For the last three years, ASB as the naming sponsor of the Marathon, has contributed to the local community through various initiatives, including its 2017 initiative ‘Run back the Tracks’ where the distance run by race entrants correlated to funding from ASB to help rebuild running tracks through the Port Hills, following fire damage earlier in the year.

ASB head of community and sponsorship Mark Graham says ASB chose to partner with Youthline to make a quantifiable difference in the lives of local Cantabrians after what had been a tough start to the year. "The events of earlier this year took a toll right across New Zealand, but nowhere more so than Christchurch. We wanted to partner with Youthline because we have a huge amount of respect for the work they do, and we know how vital that work is, especially after recent events," says Graham.

"We’re proud that every person who completes the ASB Christchurch Marathon this year and crosses the second line will be helping to support an incredibly worthwhile cause," says Graham.

Funding will be used to train and develop volunteers at call centres across New Zealand, with a proportion of the funding designated specifically for Christchurch’s call centre. Race Director, Chris Cox says the ASB sponsorship has been a lifeline of sorts for the marathon too.

"The Christchurch earthquakes were almost nine years ago now, but it has taken us that long to get the event back into the city and based again at the Christchurch Town Hall, and we’re only just now starting to get participation back to where it was in 2010. ASB’s support has been instrumental in helping this happen," says Cox.

Now in its 39th year, the Marathon will be held on Sunday June 2nd at the Christchurch Town Hall.

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