Mini-marathon organisers criticised as participants' goodie bags contain dishwasher tablets and washing detergent
The act has been condemned by participants as tone deaf.
Over 30,000 people took part in the annual VHI Women’s Mini Marathon in Dublin on Sunday afternoon which saw participants pounded the pavements in 23 degree heat as they navigated their way across the winding streets of the capital.
The 10k contest, which organisers said was the biggest of its kind in Europe, was won by Cork-native Lizzie Lee, who crossed the line with a time of 34 minutes and 18 seconds.
All those who participated in the race were sent home, upon finishing, with a goodie bag containing a number of items donated by the mini-marathon's sponsors.
However, upon opening the bag, mini-marathon participants discovered that both washing detergent and dishwasher tablets were contained inside.
Considering the mini-marathon was an event specifically targeted towards women, runners from Sunday's event have criticised the move as tone deaf.
A number of participants took to Twitter to voice their opinions.
— Maeve Whelan (@maevewhelan) June 3, 2018
Women's mini marathon goodie bag had a dishwasher table and some washing powder in it, which I think I'll feck at the next person who says "Well done, geeeerls".#VHIWMM
— Fiona Kenny (@FionaKenny1) June 3, 2018
— Mairead Carey (@kerrymairead) June 3, 2018
A week after we #Repealedthe8th - the most momentous act for equality and freedom in the history of the state, #VHIWMM thought this was appropriate for the goodie bag. Not impressed #VHIMiniMarathon, not impressed. pic.twitter.com/QXZS6p38Fj
— Gaye Edwards 💛💚💜 (@BrennanGaye) June 3, 2018
The goodie bags also reportedly contained a number of chocolates and a tea bag.
Speaking at the race, Kathy Endersen, CEO of the Women’s Mini Marathon congratulated the many thousands of women who took part.
"We feel very proud to have so many women taking to the streets of Dublin for the VHI Women’s Mini Marathon, each with their own reasons for taking part, whether it’s raising funds for great charitable causes, or to achieve their personal fitness goals,: she began.
"Well done to our winner today Lizzie Lee, and runners up Laura Shaughnessy and Siobhan O’Doherty. We would also like to thank our sponsors who help to make this event happen, as well as the community groups and charities who continue to support the event every year.”
The event, which took place on a Sunday for the first time in 18 years, saw runners, joggers and walkers of all abilities complete the 10km route and participate in the largest all-female event of its kind in the world. 2018 marked the 36th year of the event.
JOE got in touch with a member of the VHI woman's mini-marathon team, who said that they plan to take this year's criticism on board.
"The race organisers of Women’s Mini Marathon are happy to provide a Race Bag to all participants every year," the spokesperson said.
"This is one of the most popular parts of the event every year, and we strive to give all participants a selection of free, quality products. These range from food and drink items to household and lifestyle items.
"We understand that some participants were unhappy with the inclusion of dishwasher tablet and laundry detergent samples in the race bag, equally we have received positive feedback from the majority of the 30,000 women who took part in the event.
"We have included similar items in previous years, which have been well received, but understand the concerns raised by some women given the context. We welcome feedback from all of our participants, and will continue to listen and take on board the feedback which we receive each year."