Run From Hunger

run-from-hunger-01It was mid July when Lynn Erskine, the associate pastor of worship and mission at Immanuel Baptist Church in Truro, challenged a group of friends to do what they were already doing – to run – but to do it with purpose. “I am able to run a marathon because I have access to all the food I want and need- many people in the world today are not as fortunate,” he reasoned. Inspired by his vision seven others committed to lace up their sneakers alongside Lynn, marrying two passions ending hunger and running. Run From Hunger was born.

Pledges per kilometer and donations to the Run From Hunger team were designated for the Canadian Foodgrains Bank (CFBG) specifically to help people affected by drought in eastern Rwanda. Finances will go specifically towards training in agriculture, animal husbandry, harvesting rainwater and storage of produce. CFGB is a partnership of 15 churches and church organizations of which Canadian Baptist Ministries (CBM) is a founding partner, working together to end global hunger. CBM is a jointly owned ministry partnership between the Convention of Atlantic Baptist Churches and three other conventions and unions across Canada.

So on September 14th and 15th a team of runners from Immanuel Baptist Church in Truro and First Baptist Church in Dartmouth laced up their sneakers for Maritime Race Weekend’s 5km and half marathon races. But they had a different goal in mind than the almost 2000 other participants. While no one could take away the sense of accomplishment each member of the Run From Hunger team felt crossing the finish line, emotions were certainly mixed as the team was also grieving the loss of their friend, running mate, and team organizer Lynn Erskine who passed away on September 2nd, just two weeks prior to the race.

Touched by the team’s goal and the passing of a team member, the organizers of Maritime Race Weekend chose to honor Lynn’s legacy by holding a moment of silence prior to each race. Word also spread throughout race participants of the team’s purpose and many runners and their families made contributions to the CFGB initiative as well as to a memorial trust fund established to support Lynn’s wife and two young daughters. Moved by Lynn’s passing many others felt lead to run in his honor. Maritime Race Weekend had no extra room for late registration so some ran at Crandall University while others chose to travel to the race weekend location in Eastern Passage to cheer on the runners and volunteer collecting donations. To date over $3000 has come in support of the project from the Run From Hunger campaign surpassing the original fundraising goal.

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