Charlotte, Restless Development’s Schools Partnership and Programmes Coordinator for the Schools Triathlon spoke with Oliver, Raiyaan and Rohan from Cumnor House Boys about their experience raising money through the triathlons.
Oliver from the team Pixel Wolves, Raiyaan from the Superhumans and Rohan from the Thunderbolts offer their perspectives on the triathlon series, and give their top tips to any would-be triathletes out there.
Why did you want you want to take part in the Schools Triathlon?
There are many aspects to taking part in the triathlons. It’s more than just a sporting event as Oliver explained ‘Triathlons are a great way of helping young disadvantaged people around the world as well as it is great to be active. I love swimming and cycling.’
Raiyaan was inspired to take part after reading the Restless Development website. ‘It is very important that young people are given the best opportunities in life like I have and this motivated me to do something to make a difference. As well as returning 3 years running because of how much fun he had on the day. ’There was a really friendly and supportive atmosphere throughout the whole day.’ And then he found out how beneficial it can be to take on this sort of challenge. ‘I also wanted to work in a team with my classmates and push ourselves to do our best in the three activities.’
Rohan wanted to do something that made a real positive change in people’s lives, knowing that by taking part this would ‘help young people in need.’
What is your top fundraising tip for new Schools Triathlon participants?
All the boys came up with lots of fun and creative ways to raise money for Restless Development.
Oliver baked cakes, put on a concert, a board games event and an auction.
Rohan tell us his ‘most creative fundraising idea was that I could sell some of my art and books and toys for money.’
Raiyaan found the best way to raise money was through JustGiving. Raiyaan sent the link round to as many people as he knew, with a personal message explaining where the fundraising goes and why it is important. ‘People are more likely to sponsor you if you ask them personally and explain the cause you are raising money for.’ Sharing photos from training and reposting your JustGiving on social media is also great ways to boost your online fundraising. ‘It’s a really good feeling when someone sponsors you. When we reached our target, it felt the same as getting top marks for my exams!’
With lots of ways to fundraise, it’s helpful to add the personal touch into your correspondence, both Oliver and Raiyaan are experts at this. Oliver explains his top tip: ‘Set your own goal for it’, produce ‘hand written letters and personal messages to follow up’ as well as ‘send thank you notes.’
Raiyaan’s persistence paid off as he explains you should try and get as many people as you can to sponsor you’.
What is your top training tip for new triathletes?
The schools triathlons are a non-competitive sport, however, participants do recommend training beforehand.
Oliver was already used to the swimming aspect ‘For cycling and running I prepared with my mum.’
Raiyaan worked hard to train ‘by doing some extra running and cycling in my local park with my dad.’ He also suggests the right sportswear ‘My top training tip for new triathletes is to have comfortable trainers and a bike with pumped up tyres and a positive attitude!’
A big part of why we love the triathlons is the teamwork, it’s so important for wellbeing. This was a massive benefit for Rohan who trained with his team. He also suggested that when you are training ‘don’t be too serious and have fun.’
These inspiring three boys took on an incredible challenge, from fundraising to completing a triathlon. Thanks Raiyaan, Oliver and Rohan for sharing your pro-tips. We look forward to seeing pupils from Cumnor House Boys and the surrounding schools take part again this year!