An optician from Specsavers Bicester has raised more than £4,000 for Vision Aid Overseas (VAO) running a 10k race at altitude in Ethiopia.

Sarah Marshall, store director at Specsavers on Sheep Street in Bicester, took part in the race at a height of 2,400m in Addis Ababa on Saturday 25 November. Thanks to generous donations, she has far exceeded her original fundraising target of £2,700, and with money still coming in, the final total is set to rise further. 

Challenging race

Sarah said: ‘The toughest thing about the run was the heat. I’d trained really well but it’s hard to replicate the conditions in the UK, and coupled with the altitude, it made for a pretty challenging race.

'I managed to finish in 1 hour 8 minutes and was part of a group of Specsavers runners so we helped to spur each other on! To have raised more than £4,000 is just fantastic and I’d like to say a huge thank you to everyone that sponsored me.

Supporting vital education about eye health

‘More than 640 million people worldwide can't see properly, which means that they miss out on vital education and are then unable to work,’ continued Sarah.

‘VAO has walk-in clinics all over the world, so that patients can receive eye examinations and spectacles. All the money I’ve raised will go towards continuing to make this happen, so I’m sure it will be very gratefully received.’ 

About Vision Aid Overseas

Founded in 1985, VAO has been helping some of the poorest people in the world to see clearly for more than 30 years. The charity also trains local people to provide sustainable eyecare within their communities.

If you would like to sponsor Sarah, please visit her fundraising page.

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