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Coping with COVID by fundraising

Jenny Yerrell is a Nursing Assistant on our wards. Here, she shares more about why she’s fundraising to support our hospice.

“I work as a Nursing Assistant on St Catherine’s wards, in addition to this my husband and I run our own marketing business working from home.

As a result of COVID-19 and the consequent lockdown, our business has been furloughed. So while I continued to work my full time hours at the hospice, I found I had four days a week twiddling my thumbs. As someone who struggles with anxiety this isn’t healthy for me.

I’ve always enjoyed the outdoors and walking in the countryside, so I decided to do something positive with my spare time and use it to explore some new walking routes. Some of these have been solo walks and others I’ve done with walking friends. The distances we’re walking range from six to 16 miles. Although I was enjoying the walks, I realised I could turn them into something even more positive and raise some money for St Catherine’s.

I decided to challenge myself to raise £500 by completing 500 miles of walking before Christmas Day 2020 (an average of 23 miles a week). I’ve set up a fundraising page for the hospice on Facebook and it’s going really well!

One of Jenny’s beautiful walks

I’ve seen first-hand the impact that COVID-19 has had on patients I’m caring for, their relatives, and my colleagues around me. It has been, and still is, a minefield physically, emotionally and psychologically! In addition to this I’ve seen the HUGE impact the virus has had on our hospice fundraising and donations. Events have been cancelled or postponed and donations have slowed. These funds are absolutely vital to our hospice and without them we’ll struggle to continue providing the outstanding care and services that we offer.

So many people in our community have thought outside the box during lockdown and beyond, and come up with some truly amazing ways to raise money for us, doing exercise clubs, online quizzes, a marathon around the garden and so on. It’s been really inspiring, and it was this that prompted me to come up with my own challenge. It’s been amazing for my fitness, wellbeing and mental health (and I’ve lost weight!) so what more motivation do I need? I’ve also encouraged other friends to take up walking and I hope that someone reading this might be inspired to do some fundraising of their own. 

Thank you for anything you can do to support St Catherine’s – It allows me and my colleagues to be there to give care and support when it’s needed most.”

For ideas of how you can fundraise and support your local hospice please click here

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