From Addict to Athlete

A Kent Community Foundation grant will support a Primal Roots initiative to get addicts running into the New Year.

A grant of £11,500 from Kent Community Foundation will fund an important Primal Roots fitness programme to support those overcoming addiction, the trauma of homelessness or a life caught up in the criminal justice system.

The Community Interest Company will take referrals from the homelessness charity Porchlight on an alternative route to recovery via a ‘Couch to 5k’ training programme led by coaches who’ve turned their own lives around from addiction and crime to employment in addiction recovery services and the fitness industry.

Each participant who completes the Primal Roots version of the ‘Couch to 5k’ programme will be accompanied to their first Parkrun by their mentor/pacer with a view to it becoming a regular feature in their lives; including the possibility of volunteering at their local Parkrun.

Carl Adams, Co-founder of Primal Roots, said, “Since the country’s first lockdown we’ve heard unprecedented cries for help from people who’ve either relapsed into addiction or feel as though they are on the brink of doing so. Our hope for this project is that once participants form a running ‘habit’ as we did, they too will turn from Addict to Athlete. We know from first-hand experience that the part of our brain that kept us at the bar, reapplied to running, (and trail running in particular) actually gives us an advantage over your average runner. So, we’re looking to flip the script here; turning a disadvantage into an advantage, for the sake of health, happiness and our community.”

Josephine McCartney, Chief Executive, Kent Community Foundation, said, “Kent Community Foundation was delighted to fund this project which will help many addicts who have previously tried traditional routes to recovery and found these have not worked for them. Primal Roots originally applied for £10,000 towards the total project cost of £15,000 but we felt that this was such an important initiative that we would award them the funding needed to add to what they had already secured, to ensure the project could get off the ground. We wish them every success and are looking forward to hearing about their achievements.”

To find out more about funding from Kent Community Foundation call, 01303 814500 or visit



About Primal Roots CIC

Over the past five years Primal Roots has worked with over 400 participants experiencing addiction, homelessness, mental and physical health challenges, and people who’ve been caught up in a life of crime and the criminal justice system.

About Kent Community Foundation

Grant-maker Kent Community Foundation has been finding, funding, and supporting some of the smallest voluntary organisations in the county for twenty years. In this time, it has distributed over £45 million to support thousands of small charities and deserving causes where a modest sum of money can make a significant impact.

They are part of a UK wide accredited network of forty-seven Community Foundations who are committed to improving the lives of local people and communities, particularly the most vulnerable, isolated, and disadvantaged by matching those who want to help, with those who need the help.

Responsible for more than eighty philanthropic funds, Kent Community Foundation is unrivalled in its knowledge of local causes and assists individuals, families, and businesses, who want to help, to establish and administer their own charitable funds.