The Senior Leadership team at St Clare Hospice have joined local charity supporters in ‘Stepping up for St Clare’ in June, walking 10,000 steps every day for the entire month. During the month, the West Essex and East Hertfordshire charity’s six directors have smashed their target of 1.8m steps for the month, clocking up more than two million steps (2,117, 834) by the time the challenge finished – the equivalent of walking from the UK to Assasi in Italy (the home of St Clare herself). They also rasied more than £2,500 for the Hospice’s Nurses are Needed campaign.
The challenge was inspired by the number of steps a St Clare Hospice nurse walks in an average shift. Challengers were asked to raise sponsorship for their 300,000 step challenge (10,000 steps for each day in June) to fund the expansion of the Hospice’s nursing teams.
Medical Director Dr Qamar Abbas takes the scenic route for one of his walks to meet his daily 10000 steps quota.
The campaign is part of a vital long-term plan by the Hastingwood based charity to fund new roles in their Inpatient Unit, Hospice at Home and Community Palliative Care teams to meet the increased need in their local area for specialist nursing care for people with complex life-limiting illnesses.
The Step Up challenge was also supported by local people, pledging to walk to raise funds for St Clare. All together more than 4.5million steps were taken for St Clare Hospice in June, raising more than £5,000 in total to help put more nurses in people’s homes and the Hospice.
The six Hospice directors – Sarah, Rosie, Riyad, Carolanne, Qamar and Helen – are delighted with the generosity of their friends, colleagues, Hospice supporters in helping them complete their step-endous challenge:
Rosie Knowles, Director of Income Generation at the Hospice and instigator of the Senior Leadership team’s challenge, said:
“I’m so proud of us all for sticking to it and cheering each other on; I have loved the camaraderie – the feeling of ‘being in it together’, especially after a year of being distanced on screens. What has made a real difference to us is the reaction from everyone; the positivity, encouragement and support has really pushed us on when we still had 1,000 steps left to go at 10pm!
“Although it’s been tough at times, we’ve all come through feeling fitter, with sharper minds and more energy. But the biggest reward is knowing that our efforts are raising funds to help our amazing teams of nurses to support local families on their end of life journey.”
“Thank you to everyone who has supported us. The total amount is amazing and will make such a difference to help the Hospice expand its nursing provision in what we know will be a tough year.”
Chief Executive, Sarah Thompson, said:
“It certainly was a challenge getting in 10,000 steps every single day. Between working more than eight hours at a desk, and looking after my family, I often had to be up early and out late each day to reach my step count! But that challenge is nothing compared to the daily experiences of local people facing life-limiting illnesses. That is what this is all about. Making a difference to the lives of local people who need our support.”
Rosie added: “If you’re considering taking on a challenge – do it! There’s no better time than now.”
If the Hospice’s senior leaders have inspired you to pit your wits against adversity, visit the St Clare Hospice’s website for ideas and challenges to complete: stclarehospice.org.uk/ challenges/
People can still add their donation to the St Clare Hospice Senior Leadership Team’s fundraising page: justgiving.com/fundraising/stclareslt or they can donate via the Nurses Are Needed campaign page on the Hospice’s website: stclarehospice.org.uk/nurses-are/ to support the nurse expansion project.
Nurses who are looking for a rewarding career in palliative care can find our more about the new opportunities available at St Clare Hospice at: stclarehospice.org.uk/jobs
Photo caption: Five out of six members of St Clare Hospice’s Senior Leadership Team (L-R Riyad, Carolanne, Helen, Rosie and Qamar) enjoying a walking meeting in order to meet their daily target of 10,000 steps a day in June
About St Clare Hospice:
St Clare Hospice is a charity providing specialist palliative care for people living with terminal or life-limiting illnesses across West Essex and East Herts border. We care for patients and their families, providing physical, emotional, social, psychological and spiritual support, and ensuring they have timely access to skilled, compassionate and sensitive care in a place of their choice. Our services are free of charge to those who need our care, but cost around £5 million a year to run. With limited NHS funding we need to fundraise the majority of this each year through donations and other voluntary sources.