While Indigenous Marathon athletes preparing for the New York Marathon are understandably devastated with the news that the marathon has been cancelled, they will remain in New York to help the city get back on its feet.
The eight members of Rob de Castella’s Indigenous Marathon Project arrived in New York yesterday ahead of the marathon on Sunday, only to find out today that the marathon has been cancelled.
De Castella said that while the decision not to go ahead with the marathon had been gutting for the team, they were in good spirits.
“This is a decision that we need to deal with, and that is what IMP is all about. These are the experiences that help our young Indigenous men and women grow and become inspirational leaders and agents of positive change,” he said.
“Sometime it is some of the hardest things in life that teach us the most and enable us to grow and be better people.”
The team will remain in New York until Tuesday, as originally planned, and are working with the Australian consulate to organise a number of volunteer opportunities to help with the clean-up process.
“The situation in New York is absolutely devastating and far worse than anything we had imagined, with thousands of people still without shelter, food, water and power,” de Castella said.
“Our team is in good spirits and they are all looking after each other. The love and support that we have received from the Australian public and people across the world has been amazing, and will help ensure that we can come back from this set-back.”
While the team won’t get the chance to fulfil their dreams of running the New York Marathon, IMP will ensure that they are given the chance to compete in a marathon in the near future.
For more information, please contact Laura Oldfield on 0438 523 543. Regular updates can also found on the IMP website at imp.org.au and on our Facebook page at http://www.facebook.com//#!/TheMarathonProject.