There hasn’t been much time for sitting down for Luke Davitt, Dooradoyle
TURNING negatives into positives for Jigsaw Limerick - Luke Davitt is a 27-year-old from Dooradoyle running 10k every day for 42 days and raising money for the charity.
He is over half way through having ran 250km and to date, incredibly, over €16,000 has been raised for this mental health charity.
The idea behind this challenge started before the first lockdown was announced when he had just left a full-time job for his dream role which then didn’t materialise due to Covid-19.
So when the second lockdown came round Luke decided to tackle his own anxieties and support a charity helping other young people deal with theirs.
The effect the global pandemic has had on young people is often forgotten. In many instances they have been ‘scapegoated’
Luke’s story will be familiar to many.
“I was working with Uber in Limerick for two years. I got a job offer to become a sales manager for a drinks company so I gave my few weeks notice. The dream job then fell through.
“A week later the lockdown was announced and about two weeks later I got contacted by the company. They retracted the offer. It left me in limbo. I didn’t know what to do with myself because obviously the jobs market now is so competitive,” said Luke.
He continued: “I use the gym as a release, so when it was announced that the gyms would be closing as well, I thought 'Oh Jesus, I need to find something positive to do with my time’.”
When the next lockdown was announced, he wanted to use his own negative experience from the first lockdown to benefit others during the second lockdown. The Jigsaw 420km Lockdown Challenge was born.
“I wanted to do it for mental health because my own mental health was impacted a little with everything that was going on. I spoke to a number of people in gyms and online. People you don’t really expect to be struggling were but everyone was talking about the difficulties they faced during lockdowns. I knew I had to find a positive to focus on. I decided to do the running for a Limerick charity offering a service that I cared about so I went with Jigsaw Limerick,” said Luke.
He said he had incredible support from his family and close friends who helped him cope with the anxieties he faced.
“Sadly many young people experience mental struggles on a daily basis, far worse than my own and don’t have the support they need,” said Luke.
Jigsaw Limerick is a free and confidential youth mental health service for people aged 12-25 year olds.
“If this challenge encourages one person to reach out to Jigsaw, then it’s been a success. So please go follow them and support them,” said Luke.
You will find him every day in the Raheen Industrial Estate and people are welcome to join him in a socially distanced manner, with a number of people having joined him already.
“The main goal was obviously to raise donations for mental health services but I also wanted to try to encourage people to go out and exercise, and to get some fresh air. I know on the dark wet days it's not easy to get out there” he said.
Luke thanks everybody who has supported him and especially Quirke & Shaw Cleaning supplies, Limerick Lions Club, Dooradoyle Maxol Mace, The Bodybuilding Gym, David Scott Solicitors, VarTek Security, G-Stone Stonemason, BAF Ltd, Barrons Raheen, Atlantic Cabin and Containers Ltd, Chris O’Driscoll Barbers, JS Contractors and Serosep Ltd, who have all donated.
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