Harrow International School Hong Kong and its parents and teachers association Friends of Harrow co-organised its annual fundraising event for charities, Long Ducker 2016, on Saturday 12 March 2016. Over 800 participants ran or walked along the MacLehose trail and over 1200 people participated the day’s festivities. All profits are donated to the School’s six charity partners – Crossroads Foundation, Feeding Hong Kong, Lifelong Animal Protection, Kids4Kids, Nepal Youth Foundation and Half the Sky Foundation (OneSky Hong Kong).
Long Ducker is one of the charitable traditions taken from Harrow School in England. Every year at Harrow, boys, teachers, Old Harrovians and parents combine to organise and undertake a charity sponsored run, the Long Ducker. Symbolically it takes place along one of John Lyon’s roads, the Harrow Road from Marble Arch in central London to Harrow. The Hong Kong ‘twist’ now takes place along a 16.5km route on the MacLehose trail that runs immediately behind the School campus, with an alternative shorter route that allows participation of students and their families from the youngest in Early Years to the oldest in Y13, both walking and running. This year, 326 completed the Long Ducker, including the 69 Runners, and 480 walked or ran the Short Ducker.
Mr Steven Cale set an impressive pace with a Long Ducker time of 1:09, only behind invited guest marathon runner Mr Thomas Kiprotich (1:01). Frans Otten (Y12, Cale) was the first student home in 1:16, while the first female student to return was Ella Stranger (Y9, Ward) in 1:32.
The School community was wonderfully supportive of the annual event. For the first time at the Harrow Hong Kong Long Ducker, Friends of Harrow coordinated with parents to deliver an amazing range of international cuisine, lending a lively carnival atmosphere to the afternoon. The authentic food and drinks, live music and fun games and activities all contributed to a thoroughly relaxed and enjoyable day out for the entire school community. The bouncy castle and face painting were firm favourites with the younger crowd, while even the adults joined with the older students in abseiling from the 6th floor and games on the astro turf. The parents versus staff bubble football match, refereed by the Head Master, was certainly a highlight though the staff were disappointed with the 6 – 4 loss!
The School is now busy planning their final fundraising event for the year in the hope that we can surpass last year’s generous amount. We hope that parents will continue to show their support in Harrow making a difference to those in need.