Rotary Club Of Preston South members have demonstrated their determination to support St Catherine’s Hospice throughout the pandemic, by taking on a motivational walking challenge.
Members are beginning to hold their meetings in person again as the restrictions are easing, but for the past 18 months they have been communicating digitally and fundraising through physically distanced sponsored walks.
Last year they set themselves a target of walking as many miles as possible over two weeks, and have this month visited the hospice to make an incredible £10,000 donation.
Vice President of the club, Howard Moorby, said: “Over the last 18 months we have had to consider alternative ways to continue to achieve Rotary’s mission and maintain the Rotary spirit and camaraderie in a safe way.
“We set up Zoom meetings and a WhatsApp group, and we wanted to carry on working as a team for the benefit of the community. Past President Norman Yates suggested we do a sponsored walk and so the challenge was set for us to walk a combined 1,750 miles – the distance from Preston to the Algarve in Portugal; a popular holiday spot among members.
“The take-up and enthusiasm from our members, aged from mid-fifties to over eighties, was phenomenal. It raised morale and in the end we walked a total of 2,088!
“Twenty-eight members took part and walks ranged from daily strolls around the block to ascending walks in the Lakeland hills, interspersed with an array of coastal walks, country lanes and bridal paths.
“People found the challenge more difficult than anticipated, both physically and mentally, but also very rewarding. There was a lot of banter and encouragement, and each day we were humbled and overwhelmed by the generous support and well wishes posted on our JustGiving page, which without doubt spurred us all on.”
Club President Phil Entwistle added: “The result of the Club’s combined efforts is outstanding – a fantastic example of what working as a team can achieve, and I’m pleased we have been able to provide much-needed financial support in these difficult times to St Catherine’s Hospice.”
Community Engagement Officer at St Catherine’s, Emily Bate, said: “The sponsored walk was a brilliant idea and we’re delighted that members embraced it and enjoyed it so much. We’re so grateful for this amazing donation, which will make a significant contribution towards funding our specialist palliative and end-of-life care of local people.
“I’d like to say a heartfelt ‘thank you’ to everyone involved in this worthwhile charity challenge – we simply wouldn’t be here if it wasn’t for the ongoing support of our communities.”
– If you would like to organise a sponsored feat or fundraising event for St Catherine’s Hospice, please email email@example.com or call 01772 629171.
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