Runners are being asked to help save the Men's Health Forum (MHFS) 10K, which is under threat after the Scottish Government withdrew funding for the event. The race, which has taken place in Bellahouston Park for the last six years, could cease to exist in 2013 if it fails to find alternate financial support.
Elaine Boyd from MHFS told scottishrunningguide.com: "This event has reached out and made such a positive impact on so many men that it saddens us to think it might no longer take place! We love it. We worked out that if every guy on our database got together with 19 friends and they each donated £1 (plus gift aid), we would raise enough to be able to put on the race. The remainder of the costs go on the event and we aim to keep our entry fee as low as possible to encourage all guys to enter."
The organisation, which promotes healthy living and conducts research into issues affecting men, could also be under threat. The group has received funds from both the Labour and SNP administrations for the past decade, but was told in April they would no longer be given financial help.
Chairman of MHFS, Tim Street, stressed the 10K's importance: "The race gives men something to work towards, and get fit for and focus on while they are training. We are trying to get corporate sponsorship but it is proving very difficult and, as it's not the biggest event, a lot of businesses don't want to know. We are also applying for grants. Without this money, we ourselves will struggle to keep going."
The Scottish Government said that it is inappropriate for it to continue funding the race: "In 2010-11, we offered Men's Health Forum Scotland a time limited grant of £166,000 to fund core operating costs and advised them to identify alternative sources of support beyond 2010-11.
"We also offered MHFS a transitional grant in 2011-12 of £60,000 to cover operational costs while they continued to seek out other sources of funding. Much of the organisation's work is locally based and we do not believe it is appropriate for the Scottish Government to continue to cover core costs."
Almost 4000 runners took part in this year's event, raising £450,000 for charity. To donate to the cause, visit the MHFS website.