The Guide Liverpool

Run for Rhys 5k returns with family fun day at Croxteth Park to remember Rhys Jones

Grab your trainers and head for Croxteth Park this summer as the Run for Rhys 5k returns with a Family Fun Day.

Run For Rhys celebrates the life of Croxteth youngster Rhys Jones. The 5K fun run is on Sunday, 26 August, 2018, and takes place in the grounds of Croxteth Hall and Country Park.

The event also includes a 1 Mile run at 11am, which is followed by the 5K at 12pm. There is no lower age restriction to encourage families to take part. The event provides a platform for participants to remember Rhys, and to also raise much-needed funds for the Rhys Jones Community Centre to help the community hub continue its vital work in the local community.

Everton fan Rhys Jones, aged 11, was innocently caught in the cross-fire between two rival gangs. The youngster was shot when he was walking home from football training in Croxteth. Rhys lost his life on 22 August 2007.

Last year the heartbreaking story of the Jones family was portrayed in the television drama, Little Boy Blue, to coincide with the 10th anniversary of the tragedy which shocked the nation. The team behind the Rhys Jones Community Centre in Croxteth also wanted to mark the decade milestone by creating an annual positive legacy event in Rhys’ name and memory.

The team created the Run For Rhys 5K fun run with the blessing of Rhys’ parents Mel and Steve Jones. The inaugural Run For Rhys event last August saw 700 participants – including Mel and Steve – take part wearing specially designed blue T-shirts.

This year, organisers want to grow the event further and plans are well underway. And for the second year, the centre is working with independent race event organiser BTR Liverpool to organise and deliver the event.

Following the 1 Mile and 5K fun runs, the event will continue into the afternoon with stalls, entertainment and fun activities for all the family including arts and crafts, and sports demonstrations. The Rhys Jones Community Centre first opened in August 2013, and its main focus is to raise aspirations, give hope and strengthen community unity in Croxteth.

Its key focus areas with young people are building enterprise, business and leadership skills; inspiring change; raising aspirations; and improving health and well being. Ongoing programmes include youth work; workshops covering music, literacy, cookery, dance, recycling, and arts and crafts; and school holiday activities.

Karen Harper, a director of the Rhys Jones Community Centre, commented: “We are delighted to officially announce the second annual Run For Rhys 5K and 1 Mile fun runs.

“Last year’s incredible turn-out of 700 people to celebrate Rhys’ life and remember him through something fun and sporty was extremely touching for everyone involved, including Rhys’ parents Mel and Steve.

“This year, we’re extending the event into the afternoon with lots of fun activities planned. The Rhys Jones Community Centre is a vital and much-needed hub in the Croxteth community – so please come and join us for what promises to be a special legacy event in Rhys’ memory.”

Register for the 5K or 1 Mile by clicking here. Fun run registration fees pay to stage and deliver all aspects of the event, including race numbers, T-shirts and medals. Sponsor forms are available or donations can be made online and direct to https://localgiving.org/charity/rhys-jones-community-centre-cic/

We want to see your race day and family fun pictures from Croxteth Park on the day. Show us your medals on Twitter, Facebook or Instagram and we’ll share them on our socials.

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