The Harrogate Hospital and Community Charity column with David Fisher

Fundraiser Dan Wilson and fellow Stray Marathon Challenge runners.
Fundraiser Dan Wilson and fellow Stray Marathon Challenge runners.

We all know the well-known saying and understand its meaning and in the fundraising that people do for us in the community, it really does ring true!

The intensive care team, who’s Total Warrior Challenge I mentioned recently, is a great example of what can come from a small idea. A few of the team were in the pub and came up with the idea of doing some fundraising for the ward, and decided to do the Total Warrior Challenge.

This grew from a couple of people into a handful, then to a dozen until eventually, 55 members of staff from with the intensive care team and a few from other wards in the hospital had signed up to take on the challenge, raising more than £13,000.

This is the same with the challenge undertaken by Leroy, the Riverside Cafe Dog, and his friend Ian Walker, who last month completed the Coast to Coast Walk, raising over £4,000 for the Sir Robert Ogden Centre (SROMC) and Macmillan. Ian went to the cafe and was chatting to Phil, who co-owns the cafe, and is also Leroy’s owner.

Ian mentioned he was planning on doing the walk, and asked if he could take Leroy along with him.

The challenge which started as Ian walking Coast to Coast by himself grew into Ian a group of friends doing the walk, along with Leroy, and with the cafe getting heavily involved in fundraising.

They baked special biscuits in the shape of Leroy which were sold while the walk was taking place, and finished with a fantastic fundraising night at the cafe last week.

From one man’s idea to do a walk and give a bit back to show appreciation to those who cared for him; a whole community of people including friends, family and customers of the cafe got involved and made sure that Ian raised as much as possible from his efforts.

My final example is Dan Wilson, who this time last year was preparing to take on the Yorkshire Marathon; following a triathlon a few weeks before, he became ill and was unable to complete the marathon.

Not wanting to let down the people that had sponsored him, he set himself a new challenge, to run 13, 2 mile laps of Harrogate’s Stray. What was originally planned as a solo marathon soon turned into an unplanned community event after dozens of other local runners turned out to join him after hearing about his ambitions on social media and through word of mouth.

With the current financial difficulties facing the NHS across the country and the recently documented challenges being faced at Harrogate and District NHS Trust, the support we receive from our fantastic supporters has never been more appreciated.

Community fundraising is exactly what it says on the tin! It’s all about community! Whether it is your friends, family, work colleagues, school friends, hobby buddies, or people you know through a group such as Rotary or Women’s Institute, so gather your community together and turn your acorn of a fundraising idea into a mighty oak.

You don’t need to organise your own event or take on a challenge to get involved though. We have a number of events coming up you can join in with including our Music Hall on 28 October, Strutting for Cancer Fashion Show on 9 November, The SROMC Ball and the Maternity Ball, in April and May 2018, and finally, we will be hosting our first It’s A Knockout Competition at Ripley Castle on 30 September 2018 – visit our Facebook pages for more info on all of our upcoming events: facebook.com/harrogatehospitalcharity.