Recently, one of ALERT’s supporters pushed himself to the limit in the name of lion conservation. Heath Jones, a volunteer at Antelope Park, completed the Run Melbourne Half Marathon to raise money and awareness to support ALERT’s work.
During Heath’s first trip to Zimbabwe, he came across the chance to walk with lions. ‘In my own selfish way, I thought this would be a great opportunity to get a photo with a lion’, he explained. During the lion walk ALERT’s work towards the conservation of the African lion was explained, but Heath admitted that at that stage he was really just interested in getting the perfect photo to show off to family and friends back in Australia. It wasn’t until he returned home that Heath began to research what ALERT was all about. He became very interested and so decided to join the volunteer project at Antelope Park. Having volunteered for three weeks, during which time he was able to see first-hand the work that ALERT is doing, Heath has gone on to become a strong advocate of the program and decided to show his support by running his heart out for the lions.
At the beginning of his training, Heath was finding it a real challenge to just run around the park. Determined to make it all the way to the end, he continued to prepare himself for the big event; reminding himself all the time about why he was doing it. On the day, this training along with thoughts of the lions he had worked with during his time in Zimbabwe kept Heath going, particularly around the 17kilometre mark when his legs began to turn to jelly.
Heath successfully completed the half marathon and now hopes to go on to even greater things. ‘Now that I know I can run a half marathon, my next challenge is running a full marathon, so watch this space...’
ALERT would like to thank Heath for his continued support of our work.
If you would like to organise a fundraising event on ALERT’s behalf, we would be very grateful. Please contact ALERT’s Development Co-ordinator Helen Rennie to discuss your idea: email@example.com.