GoodGym – a year of running good deeds

Posted on Friday 10th November 2017
Running is a great way to stay fit, but what if you could do it and give something back to the community? That’s the idea behind GoodGym. 

GoodGym, which came to Bournemouth in summer 2016, is a registered charity that combines keeping fit with community projects and provides support to isolated people through a befriending programme. The group runs 5k together every Wednesday, and regularly these become ‘mission runs’. Meeting in central Bournemouth, the group stops en route to participate in volunteering projects. Previous mission runs have included painting and decorating community venues and litter picking.

Manuel Laurijssen, GoodGym Bournemouth's new trainer, said: “GoodGym is the perfect way to improve your fitness in a fun, welcoming environment. Whether you're brand new to running or a seasoned marathoner you also get to help out your local community."

Many Bournemouth runners also participate in the befriending programme. Visiting an older person as part of a weekly run can make a huge difference to their life. Over a million older people in the UK say they are always or often lonely, some go for months without seeing friends or family. By partnering with the Council for Voluntary Service (CVS) in Bournemouth, GoodGym wants to reach more local older people. If you, or someone you know, would benefit from a weekly visit by a runner, contact Romany Ross on 01202 466130 or via email: 

Councillor Pat Oakley, Cabinet Member for Tourism, Leisure & The Arts said: “The idea of giving something back while keeping fit is to be commended. I’d like to congratulate GoodGym members on a year of good deeds in Bournemouth.”

There are currently 38 running areas across the country signed up to GoodGym with over 60 in the pipeline. GoodGym members say mission runs and the befriending programme are great for motivation.

You can find out more here