St Albans entrepreneur and charity founder triumphant in London marathon despite injury

PUBLISHED: 18:00 07 May 2016

Zoe Jackson MBE  ran the 2016 London Marathon for her charity The Dream Foundation.

Zoe Jackson MBE ran the 2016 London Marathon for her charity The Dream Foundation.

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A young St Albans entrepreneur ran the London Marathon to celebrate the 10th anniversary of her performing arts company and to raise money for its accompanying charity.

The Dream Foundation founder Zoe Jackson running the 2016 London Marathon. The Dream Foundation founder Zoe Jackson running the 2016 London Marathon.

Zoe Jackson’s company, Living the Dream, has expanded over the past decade to included a performing arts school, a professional dance company and charity, The Dream Foundation, which works to champion young talent, create access to the arts, entertain audiences and inspire young people to live their dreams.

Zoe said: “Running the marathon was physically, emotionally and mentally the hardest thing I’ve ever done.”

“The atmosphere was incredible, I injured my knee during the second half and was in so much pain but the crowds kept shouting and they kept me going, they were amazing.”

With the crowds cheering her on, Zoe was determined to finish the race, although there was a specific part of the course she recalled was the most difficult. “There was a part where you go into a tunnel which people have called ‘the breakdown tunnel’ because it’s away from the crowds and you’re on your own and you start to realise how much of a struggle it is – but you have to keep going.
“The second half was very tough as my knee injury gave in and I spent the last part of the race shuffling and walking.

“When I got to the finish line it was the best thing ever. It was such a relief,” said Zoe, who finished the race in 6hrs 2mins and 55secs.

Zoe – who was awarded an MBE last year for services to young entrepreneurs and the performing arts – campaigns to raise awareness and support for the challenges facing young people.

The 26-year-old said: “The students are all so proud. Loads of them sponspored me. I had videos to watch from supporters when I was running round. They were my motivation.”

Having caught the running bug, Zoe has her sights set on the St Albans Half Marathon in June and wants to compete again in London next year.

Go to uk.virginmoneygiving.com and search ‘Zoe Jackson’.

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