Three of a Kind

There are few events quite like the Great North Run. It’s the biggest running event in the UK and the largest Half Marathon in the world. Its 13.1 mile route begins in Newcastle, and takes its runners over the Tyne Bridge, through Gateshead and towards the lovely coastal town of South Shields. It has stunning coastal views, live bands to spur its runners on and a generally fantastic atmosphere.

So imagine how thrilled we are to announce that there are one, not two, but three different people running in this year's event on Sunday 11th September for OCD Action.

First we have Sam Ormrod.


Sam has had OCD since he was 14 years old, and has an especially hard time of it when he reached his twenties. He struggled with intrusive thoughts and the need to repeat danger words which caused him a lot of distress and led him to drink heavily and take drugs. But with the help of therapy, Sam is now doing much better and has learned to control his OCD rather than have it control him. He’s doing the Great North Run in order to raise awareness and help people like himself. As Sam says:

I'm supporting OCD Action because I know what it is like to live with a mental health disorder and the stigma that still surrounds it. I want to help raise awareness of this condition and support people going through tough times and hope that people I know will support me and OCD Action to help people who struggle daily with this disorder.

Sam has raised £135.00 on his JustGiving page, but he tells us he’s managed to raise even more through other channels and has managed to surpass his £150 target. So visit his page and help him raise even more!

Second is Debbie Robinson. Some of you may know Debbie from her long history of voluntary work with the charity. Debbie is the North West Regional Volunteer for the Even Better Together project, playing a huge part in bringing our support groups together. She runs the Central Manchester Parents OCD Support Group which provides a wonderful service for those who, like her, are parents of people with OCD. She also has previous experience of this sort of fundraising: in 2014 she completed the Edinburgh Marathon, raising an amazing £1095, which was the highest amount of any fundraiser that year from a single event, and last year she ran a 10K twice to draw attention to the cyclical, repetitive nature of OCD. She's not content to leave it there and let that be enough, though, so Debbie will also be joining the Great North Run. Visit her JustGiving page and show how appreciated she is for all her hard work. She's already managed to raise £95 over the space of one weekend!

Third, there’s Dan Ellingworth. Another member of Debbie's support group who she convinced to join her in the double 10K last year, she's managed to rope him in once again for this event. Dan was inspired to raise money for OCD Action partly due to his dissatisfaction with the current state of mental health services:

OCD is a life-limiting condition that impacts massively on the lives of the person suffering from it, and the family and carers of them. As statutory mental health services are being cut and are under such strain, the need for OCD Action is growing. Please consider supporting me in raising as much money as possible for such a worthy cause.

Here is Dan training for the event:

So visit Dan’s JustGiving page. He’s already raised £125, and with your help he can surpass that!

Best of luck to our three amazing runners, though we’re sure they won’t need it! Thank you all for running for us, and we know you’ll do us proud at the event.

Do you fancy doing something like this to raise awareness and funds for OCD Action? Just get in touch with Charlie at or call the London office on 020 7253 5272 and we’ll give you as much help as you need.