ATHERTON Roosters A-Grade forward Luke La Rosa will be swapping the footy boots for the running shoes this week as he takes part in the 2019 ASICS Half Marathon on the Gold Coast.
Mr La Rosa is participating in the run for a very worthy cause, as he aims to raise much needed awareness and funding for child abuse – a scourge he sees all too much of in his position as Program Coordinator at Community Services Tablelands (CST). Mr La Rosa said his decision to run in the Half Marathon was one borne out of knowing that it would generate interest and shine a light on the importance of ensuring vulnerable members of our communities are safe and protected from harm.
“Most days I see the impacts of trauma on children and their families, either directly or vicariously,” he said.
“Child protection has become something I am very passionate about, and I’m a big advocate for the work that child protection organisations are doing within communities, by proactively educating children to prevent harm, while providing ongoing support for children to address trauma.
“On a personal level, providing families with the support required to enhance their capacity and provide better outcomes for their children is really rewarding.”
While preparing for a 21 kilometre run might be foreign from the rigours of rugby league, they’re both demanding in their own right.
“Training has increased in the last month, and I’ve been trying to run as much as possible,” he said.
“It’s been a simple workout plan, with increasing lengths and intensity, but I’ll be easing off in the coming week to ensure my body is in the best position to get through the 21km without injury.
“I recently completed a 17km obstacle course run which has allowed me to get an idea of what to expect.”
Mr La Rosa said the response from the community has been great since he began his donation drive.
“A lot of people have shared the page to raise awareness for the cause,” he said.
“I’ve raised $2000, but my final goal is $3000.
“I’d like to sincerely thank the entire Tablelands community that has got behind the cause by either donating, sharing, or simply discussing child protection over the last few weeks.
“Child protection is everyone’s business, and this mentality will only lead to better outcomes for children within our community.”
For those interested in donating, you can do so by visiting hwww.gcm2019.everydayhero.com/au/help-protect-aussiechildren#