Ambulance paramedic Lyn Sinclair, along with husband Ian, started Sirens of Silence last year and this year officially amalgamated with local Perth running club Rogue Runners. Image – supplied.
By Kate Dzienis
It’s not uncommon to see runners raising money for charity groups in remembrance of a loved one or for a cause that is close to their heart, aiming for anything from $100 to more than $5,000 in the hope that their achievement inspires friends and family to donate.
But this year an entire Perth (WA) running crew, which has been established since 2011, has officially partnered itself with a not-for-profit and dedicated its membership base to fundraising and awareness.
Rogue Runners Club Australia were previously an incorporated group and encouraged its members to raise money for charities including the Leukaemia Foundation, the Motor Neurone Disease Association and the Australian Childhood Foundation.
Since establishing itself, Rogue Runners have become a strong presence on the Perth race calendar, always setting up a marquee at events like the Perth Marathon and Perth Half Marathon and cheering every runner in the field with words of encouragement and ringing cowbells for all to hear.
But earlier this year it decided to move it up a notch and officially teamed up with the Sirens of Silence Charity (SOS), becoming the SOS Running Crew.
In response to the intense and emotional exposure of traumatic events first responders and emergency personnel face, SOS was founded in 2015 by paramedics Lyn and Ian Sinclair to provide awareness, direction and support of post-traumatic stress disorder and suicide prevention within the emergency services.
Rogue Runners founding member Peter Shinnick said with the group’s aim to make a difference in the lives of other people it was simply natural to become amalgamated with SOS and continue its successful fundraising goals.
“Running is such a simple yet rewarding activity that is proven to benefit people physically and mentally, we’ve witnessed some of our members change their lives for the better through running and living a healthier lifestyle,” he said.
“Our connection with SOS essentially stemmed from the fact that the other three founding members of RRCA have all served the community in the past, in either the police force or the navy.
“They had all witnessed and experienced the emotional and mental toll that comes with these careers.
“As a club we were immediately drawn to the amazing work that Lyn and Ian were doing with SOS and it just seemed to be a perfect fit.”
Mr Shinnick said he and the rest of RRCA were extremely excited by the new partnership because it resonated strongly with the club’s membership base and throughout the broader community.
He said RRCA were looking forward to assisting SOS with increasing awareness and money in support of all those people who constantly gave so much of themselves.
“Due to the nature of the work these amazing people do, they often witness some terrible situations and often suffer silently as they try to deal with what they’ve seen,” he said.
“We would definitely like to see these people better supported and for the community to become better informed as to how best to deal with emotional and mental health issues.”
Running SOS from Broome (WA) but operating across the state, Ms Sinclair said despite the financial partnership between the two groups only having started on July 1 of this year, already a big difference has been made to emergency service personnel.
“We know the Rogues are amazing at raising money so with that in mind, any fundraising money from them has not yet been specifically selected for any one project as yet,” she said.
“Together SOS and RRCA have already been able to secure two Master Trainer Scholarships with the Australian Institute of Fitness and the winners have recently been announced; these scholarships are worth $6,990 and this is going to change the lives of two of our members needing to change their lives for the better.
“We know how important fitness is for mental wellness so this is our major focus with RRCA at present.”
RRCA will encourage all its members and associates to get involved in fundraising activities throughout the year and beyond – these events will include entering running distances from 10kms to ultra marathons and everything in between such as sausage sizzles and virtual runs.
You can also join RRCA and get in touch with the organisation by hitting up facebook and searching for Rogue Runners Club Australia.
Runglobal gives virtual high fives to all those running on the tracks and paths, beaches and trails, and raising money for such a worthwhile cause.