Brighton Woman Launches Endurance Challenge To Honour Sister

Raquel Snajdar and Ashvini Webster

Raquel Snajdar, who tragically lost her sister to depression over two years ago, has challenged herself to compete in 40 races over a period of 20 months to raise money for suicide prevention charity Grassroots.

As part of the challenge she will be competing in the Sprint Distance Sebamed Brighton and Hove Triathlon, which takes place on the 16th September. The race involves a 750m swim in the sea, a 20km closed road bike course and a fast 5k run along Hove Promenade.  This iconic triathlon is fast becoming a big part of Brighton with around 1400 competitors joining Raquel on race day.

On her blog, Raquel tells the moving story of what it is to lose a sibling to suicide, and how she attempts to combat the grief and pain she still feels every day, through physical exercise and fundraising. “I feel that grief has taken over my life at times and this fundraising idea is a way for me to channel my grief in a positive way.”

Her strength and resilience is quite remarkable, and as she prepares for this awesome challenge she credits her sister for the inspiration, “Klaire was rather partial to a Tough Mudder or two so this challenge would have been right up her street…..And on top of that ….. I’ll be raising money for such a great cause!” 

Raquel is keeping a list of races and an on-line blog on her website for the challenge.  Other races she will be completing include the Brighton Music 5k, Paddle Round the Pier Swim and will culminate in the London Marathon on April 2020.

When asked why she had set herself this impressive challenge Raquel said, “I want to raise awareness by breaking down the stigma surrounding this topic and to tell people it’s ok to talk about it and to think about how you might protect yourself in a crisis.  Suicide is completely avoidable but it can happen to anyone at any time.”

This is where the work of local charity Grassroots Suicide Prevention comes in. Grassroots’ approach is based on education and innovation, and the belief that real talk about suicide can save lives. They teach practical suicide prevention skills, to help people to become more ready, willing and able to have lifesaving conversations.

Since 2006 they have trained over 9,000 people, and their pioneering ‘Stay Alive’ smartphone app helps both people at risk of suicide and those who want to support them. The app has over 60,000 downloads and has won a number of awards. Most importantly, personal and professional feedback shows that Grassroots’ training and app have helped save lives from suicide many times.

Raquel is asking for donations from everyone who is moved by her story and would like to help people suffering from depression or thoughts of suicide to get the help they need to recover. To make a donation please go to her fundraising page here.

Raquel said “If the money I raise can help towards saving just one life – it’s worth it, not just for the person saved but for their friends, family and loved ones too.”

The Sebamed Brighton and Hove Triathlon takes place on Sunday 16 September and entries are still open. To enter or for more information, visit www.brightonandhovetriathlon.com.