Annie, #Glowing for #WirralHospice

annie-jNow that our first Glow with the Flow walk is over, we wanted to speak to one of our walkers to see how they found this neon filled walk. Our first person accross the line, Annie, was more than happy to share her experience:

Annie, what made you sign up to this event?

It sounded like such a fun event to be part of, I signed up as soon as the Fundraising Team announced it! Some dear family and friends have been cared for by the Hospice which is why it’s so close to my heart.

Was the event what you expected?

It was even better! There was an amazing atmosphere from the moment I arrived. Excited and colourful women, young and old, everywhere you looked. People laughing and having their faces painted, it felt a bit like a carnival.

What was the highlight of the night for you?

I was very proud to have been asked to lead the walk so that everyone knew where to go. We had marshals in place too all along the route but it was a great feeling to know that I was marching 900 women and girls along. I got so into it waving my glow sticks about that when I turned around a couple of times my fellow walkers had lagged some way behind so I had to wait for them to catch up!

How much have you raised in sponsorship so far?

So far it’s £366 online and I have raised about £250 from good old-fashioned sponsor forms. People have been very generous so I would just like to say a really big thank you for your support. It means so much to me and I know it does to the Hospice too.

You can find Annie’s page here

What would you recommend people do to prepare for the event?

I’m a keen walker anyway and have two dogs that need a lot of exercise so it was easy for me to cope with that distance. Though I must say I don’t usually walk quite so fast or with glowing bunny ears on! It’s an event for people of all abilities and  five miles is an achievable distance that you only really need to put in some gentle training in the weeks leading up.

Would you take part in this event again?

Yes, I can’t wait until next year!

Thank you to Annie and everyone who took part in and supported ‘Glow with the Flow’. We had more than 900 walkers glowing as they walked from West Kirby to Hoylake and back for our five mile walk!

We are delighted by the support we received from local business and the council which enabled this event to be such a success and we hope to have raised over £20,000 from this amazing walk.

Visit our Facebook page to see photos from the night.

Author: Jacinta Warwick

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81 Days ‘Till #LondontoParis!

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Left To Right: Jo & Chris

It’s getting ever closer to this year’s London to Paris Bike Ride, an awesome and epic cycle through 300 miles of rural towns and countryside from the 20th – 24th July, our twelve strong team are working hard to train and raise funds for the hospice in preparation for this adventure. One member of last year’s team, Chris, spoke to us recently about her experiences with last year’s London to Paris Cycle.

What made you take part in the event?

“As I was an employee of the Hospice observing how hard the staff work in order to support patients and their families, I felt a strong desire to help their efforts and to raise as much money as possible. Jo, who completed the cycle with me, has also worked as a nurse and was keen to be involved.”

How did you find the fundraising side? What was the best way of raising funds?

Fundraising was lots of fun and a great learning experience. We found the best method of fundraising is communication and involvement of family, friends and colleagues. There are many events which, in our case, proved financially beneficial towards our target e.g. coffee morning, fashion shows, pub quizzes, raffles, etc. all time consuming but great fun.”

What did you enjoy about the cycle ride?

“The cycle was awesome from start to finish. Beautiful English and French countryside with local residents and passers-by clapping and cheering encouraging all the cyclists. The finish cycling around the Eiffel Tower is a wonderful, wonderful memory. It is a lifetime experience not to be missed and we have no doubt one we hope to experience again. It surpasses my 7 global marathons and is an achievement we are both very proud.”

What advice can you give to this year’s riders?

“Enjoy the training and include a few hills!! It will be well worth it.”

Another one of last year’s riders, Frank, is doing it all over again this year, he shared with us why he wanted to do the challenge a second time.

IMAG0804 - Copy edit“I’m taking on the London to Paris ride for the second consecutive year. I think that tells you something in itself. It was such an inspirational trip for me. Not just in terms of the personal challenge and the wonderful countryside which the ride passes through between the two capitals. But the shared experience, friendship and support my fellow riders gave to each other was something very special. This July, it will be a privilege to ride again with others who are taking on this challenge for Wirral Hospice St John’s.”

Cycling from London to Paris is one of the great cycle experiences in Europe covering over 300 miles in 4 days. With long days in the saddle and some strenuous hill-climbs, the sight of the Eiffel Tower, the finishing point, evokes a real sense of achievement. It is an inspirational and challenging experience to treasure forever.

If you would like to take part in the 2017 London to Paris challenge simply call Michelle on 0151 343 0778 or email michellet@wirralhospice.org for a full information pack and everything you need to take part in this fantastic event.

Author: Jacinta Warwick

“My crazy journey in memory of Bernie” #ironman #hospicehero

As a charity, we rely heavily on the generosity of the local community and are extremely thankful to those who support us. We are blown away by their kindness and the hard work they put in to raise vital funds to support our work – sometimes even, by the adrenaline-inducing ways in which they choose to fundraise!20150415-Army_Cycle_Race016_RSA_TIC-O - Copy

Wirral Hospice supporter Paul Robinson, who has raised £895 to date, started his ‘crazy journey’ in December 2014 when he began training for a challenge that is widely considered as one of the most difficult one-day sporting events in the World.

Ironman‘ consists of a 2.4 mile swim (equivalent to 158 lengths in a standard pool), a 112 mile bicycle ride (equivalent to Liverpool to Cheltenham) followed by a full marathon (26.2 miles). Each part of the challenge is raced in that order, without a break and must be completed within a strict 17 hour time limit. (We’re exhausted just thinking about it!) But for Wirral Hospice supporter Paul Robinson, this challenge is both an exciting and important journey.

“I’m racing in memory of my wife’s mother, Bernie Hudson after Wirral Hospice played a key role in supporting Bernie and her close, loving family before she passed away. To complete the challenge, I started working on my general fitness, progressing to become more powerful and more of a triathlete. It’s going to be an exciting, if not painful journey to become an Ironman”.

Also adding to the challenge will be the temperature. Ironman events are held all over the World, including in Nice, France (Sun 28th June) where Paul will be swimming in the Mediterranean Sea, biking in the Alps and running along Nice’s historic waterfront – all in a 28C degree heat. Now that’s a challenge.

Best of luck Paul. We’re all rooting for you!

To support Paul through this incredible challenge visit his online fundraising page: www.justgiving.com/IronmanFRANCE15/

Brittany loses hair for patient care #hospiceheroes #headshave

Brittany White proved she is no ordinary teenager when she shaved her head at Revive hairdressers on 19th September to raise funds for Wirral Hospice St John’s.

A member of the Merseyside Army Cadets Hoylake Detachment, Brittany, 16, was adamant that she wanted to make a difference by raising money for a charity that has supported many of her family friends.

Brittany enlisted the help of many businesses in Heswall and Moreton, including her Mum’s place of work, Reebees Florist on Pensby Road, to display collection boxes and buckets on their counters in support of her challenge.

Brittany says, “I wanted to help people in the Hospice because I have known many people who have had illnesses like Cancer, including my Uncle and Granddad. I just thought about what others could gain from me doing it and knew it was important”.

When Brittany’s family initially heard about her idea, they didn’t think it would actually happen. Mum, Donna and Dad, Tony said, “We didn’t think Brittany would actually go through with it at first, but as the date moved closer and more sponsorship was raised, we knew it was what she wanted to do”.

As an alopecia sufferer, Donna knows how it hard it is to deal with hair loss and felt worried about Brittany going through a similar situation. The feelings of concern soon subsided as Donna, Tony and many of the businesses on Pensby Road watched Brittany lose her hair for charity. “Now that it has happened, we just feel so proud of her!”

With her long hair having been donated to The Little Princess Trust to make real hair wigs for children sbrittany_white_headshave_linzi_revive_wirral_hospiceuffering from hair loss, Brittany’s challenge has enabled not one, but two charities to benefit from her bravery.

With the help of her support team, Brittany has raised £1000 for Wirral Hospice.

Wirral Hospice St John’s Fundraising Co-ordinator, Kerry Threadgill said, “Shaving your head for charity can be a really scary thing to do but even more so for someone of such a young age. We are so touched by Brittany’s bravery and really commend her for raising such a fantastic amount of money to help provide care for our patients and their families”.

Thank you to everyone who has supported Brittany’s amazing challenge:
Reebees Florist, Revive Hairdressers, Belmar & Liston Funeral Directors, H. Jones & Sons Butchers, Fine Fruits, The Fig Tree Café, Frederick Howard Opticians, Gerrards Bakery, Cards ‘n’ Candy, Numark Pharmacy, Nagra Convenience Store, Merseyside Army Cadets Hoylake Detachment, Brittany’s family, Andy Benson & all of Brittany’s friends and everyone else who has generously donated. Thank you!

­­To support Brittany, visit: https://www.justgiving.com/Brittany-kerry/

Mud, sweat and a pint in memory of Jim #hospiceheroes #toughmudder

It’s no wonder that Tough Mudder – a 10-12 mile obstacle course designed to test all-around strength, stamina, teamwork and mental grit – is described as ‘probably the toughest event on the planet’. whsj_mark_cunningham_2

You may think an event boasting obstacle courses such as ‘Electroshock Therapy’, ‘Everest’ and ‘Artic Enema’ is surely a challenge that only hard-core fitness fanatics and adrenaline junkies would sign up for, but for Mark Cunningham and team ‘B Block’, a very special friend was the drive behind their challenge.

Mark says, “Jim Kelly was a serving Police Officer on a busy response block who would often put his welfare second to help people in times of need. Myself and many others in the team had the pleasure of working alongside him. Often affectionately called ‘The Angry Chimp’ on the Block, Jim was hands down one of the best Bobbies most of us ever had the pleasure to meet. After developing a brain tumour, Jim was cared for by the wonderful staff at Wirral Hospice St John’s before he passed away peacefully in February of this year. He was a colleague, a friend, a husband and a dad.”

As a tribute to their friend, Jim’s colleagues signed up for Tough Mudder North West in September, knowing that the event would have been right up Jim’s street. “He remained strong right to the end and so this was our chance to be strong for Jim”.

“We were all responsible for spreading the word and raising money – runners and cheerleaders together. As we arrived at the event, a chap with a microphone and PA saw us all – a sea of blue t-shirts and gave a shout out to thousands of people queuing to enter the course. Even a couple of marshals with megaphones further down the course gave the team and the Hospice a shout-out too! It was amazing. We were very proud to be representing Wirral Hospice, wearing our t-shirts with pride and remembering Jim as we put our all into each obstacle. As we crossed the finish line, we were presented with the infamous Tough Mudder headbands and a celebratory pint. We stood there together, pint in hand and toasted Jim and the Hospice. whsj_mark_cunningham_3

It’s taken a few days to start to feel human again – a few aches and pains in places that I never knew could ache and mud in places that mud really should never be! Raising money for Wirral Hospice St John’s is a small way of saying thank you to the amazing staff that do a tough job in such a caring way every day. We had an amazing time with lots of people on our support team wishing they had run the course too. I think the team will be bigger next year!”

Mark and the team have raised an incredible £945.00 for Wirral Hospice which will help us to continue to provide our special care future patients and their families. Thank you Team B Block!

To support Team B Block, visit their fundraising page: http://uk.virginmoneygiving.com/team/BBlockToughMudder2014

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