We have launched a year-long fundraising appeal, with the simple message of asking supporters to ‘Step Out’ and help our charity during these difficult times.
With indoor events having been made impossible this year, our focus is on people’s ability to get out and run, walk or jog to help the Hospice keep providing its care and services. A distinctive pair of bright yellow shoelaces will be given to every participant who signs up for a sponsored event, as well as a t-shirt and a package of fundraising support, hints and tips.
The four main challenges that people can sign up for are The Inverness Half Marathon and 5K on Sunday 16 May, Route to Remember on Saturday 26 June, Great Wilderness Challenge on Saturday 14 August and Baxters Festival of Running on Sunday 3 October. If any of these are cancelled due to ongoing restrictions, fundraisers will be supported to run or walk the same distance on the same day and record their activity on Strava.
Fundraiser Katie Gibb explains, “With the restrictions currently in place on all of our lives, 2021 could really be your year to make a difference – not only by setting yourself a fitness goal but also helping your local Hospice and the vital service it provides.”
“Whether you would like to walk in memory of someone special, trek through the wilderness, or run a pre-school race, 5K, 10K, Half or full Marathon, there should be something that is achievable for most people. And if you’re not keen on an organised event, why not create your own challenge with a date, distance and location that suits you?”
“Your eyes could be opened not only to your own ability, but your training and event participation could lead you to beautiful places you have never seen before.”
Hospice supporter and service user Barry (Bar) MacDowell, 46, is backing the campaign with the simple message, “I can’t step out to help Highland Hospice. Can you?”
Barry, diagnosed with Multiple Sclerosis in 2015, was the first patient to access the Hospice’s new rehab service in 2019, when his physiotherapist Sarah referred him. Due to the progression of his illness Barry uses a wheelchair.
He says, “Not only did the wonderful staff all help me physically, they also helped me with my mental health, enabling me to come to terms with and accept my ongoing progression.”
“Most people think of a Hospice in terms of end of life care for cancer patients, but my eyes were really opened to the many different conditions and stages of illness they provide for.”
“My time spent there helped me hugely, and I still do my best to keep on top of Ravi, their physiotherapist’s regime, although I’m not so keen on his insistence that I wash the dishes as part of it!”
“The Hospice has helped me begin a new chapter in my life and they continue to support me, keeping me focussed so I can keep my independence. I’m so grateful for all the hard work and input I’ve received from their whole care team.”
“If I could tie up my yellow laces and do a sponsored run to help Highland Hospice, I wouldn’t hesitate. So if you can do it to support me and the many others who receive their care, I really would be grateful. Thank you.”