Austin RatheAustin Rathe is, as many of you will know, the Head of Member and Supporter Development at Lib Dem HQ. He has presided over an increase in membership over the last couple of years and is the architect of the incentive scheme which makes it worth local parties’ while putting lots of effort into recruiting members.

He is someone who works almost every hour imaginable and is often to be seen responding to queries raised by members not just through the usual channels but on social media, too.

He’s a very busy person and you can’t really imagine him sitting still for more than 5 seconds. I did wonder, though, when I saw that he was planning to run the London Marathon this April whether we were working him hard enough. Or, alternatively, whether we were working him too hard if he thought that running 26 miles was something he’d do for a rest.

He knows what it takes to run the marathon, having raised almost £2300 for the British Heart Foundation in memory of our much missed friend Andrew Reeves in 2012.

This year’s event takes place on 26th April. That will be P(oiling Day) – 11. Austin will be running to raise funds for Special Effect, a small charity which helps people with disabilities to enjoy playing video games. You can see some of the good work that they do in this video.

I know that we are supposed to be giving every last penny to help our election effort – and we still should. However, there are going to be times when we end up in the pub after campaigning, or we buy ourselves some delicious sugary treat to keep ourselves going. What I would suggest is that we forego those treats on one occasion over the next few weeks and donate the money we save to Austin’s effort. That way, we cheer on a colleague who does so much to support us and we help a very worthy cause. It is incredibly easy to donate on Austin’s fundraising page.

* Caron Lindsay is Editor of Liberal Democrat Voice and blogs at Caron's Musings