According to Wigan Today, 69-year-old Rev Roger Gibbard will ditch his running shoes in the name of helping asylum seekers and refugees in Wigan next week.
The former vicar of St Michael’s And All Angel’s Church in Swinley said he’s taking on the challenge to raise money for Support for Wigan Arrivals Project (Swap), which s provides resources to help local refugees and asylum seekers in Wigan settle in the borough.
Rev Gibbard told Wigan Today: “It seems to me particularly appropriate to run barefoot for Swap because many of the people we support have left stuff at a moment’s notice.
“Compared to that, running barefoot is nothing. It’s a statement that sometimes you have to leave things behind and it’s still okay.”
Rev Gibbard has previously competed in two 10K races and a half marathon without shoes. He said he only runs with shoes if it’s absolutely necessary.
He told the news outlet:” You just have to be aware of what you are running on and avoid things like glass.
“The 10k, like the half marathon, is on quite a good route. It’s always along roads or tarmac so that’s no problem.
“I just look out for the odd bit of rubbish or odd bit of glass. It’s very doable.”
Rev Gibbard hopes to raise £500 Swap, which he also volunteers with.
A retired vicar from Swinley is training to run a 10K race without any shoes.