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Fast run for a great cause


Traffic and roadworks may have delayed his start, but Fr Charles Lukati certainly made up for lost time and ran the perfect race for Caritas Australia earlier this month.

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After months of training – which included participating in the annual Southern Schools Fun Run for Project Compassion held in March – Fr Charles ran the Clare half marathon on April 2, completing the 21.1km course in an impressive 1 hour 33 minutes. Not only was it a personal best time for the Kenyan priest, but he also received a medal for finishing third in his age group.

Fr Charles in action during the half marathon.

It was a tremendous effort considering he arrived late for the start of the race due to delays caused by roadworks. However, more important than Fr Charles’ time was his reason for running – to raise money for Caritas Australia’s appeal to support those affected by the earthquake in Turkey and Syria.

Caritas Australia Diocesan director Tracey Tessitore, who attended the Clare event to cheer on Fr Charles, said with the generous support of parishioners he surpassed the $10,000 fundraising target.

“It was wonderful to see Fr Charles running for such a great cause and all his supporters are so proud of his efforts,” she said.

Meanwhile, Caritas Australia has thanked the more than 1700 schools and 1200 parishes around the nation for their ‘incredible Project Compassion fundraising’ over Lent.

“The energy and passion to raise funds for Caritas Australia has been incredible this year,” said Caritas Australia’s CEO, Kirsty Robertson.

“I want to thank everybody who has been a part of this year’s Project Compassion – whether you’ve put spare change in a donation box at church, or you’ve set up a fundraiser at your parish or school, you have done your part to make the world a better place.

“Your kindness and generosity will help us to reach some of the most marginalised and vulnerable communities to face the challenges of poverty. I can’t think of a better way to live out the spirit of Lent than that.”

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