Triumph against adversity: teams for Toms Trust take on Ben Nevis
Set in the stunning Scottish Highlands, The Ben Nevis Charity Challenge was a greater undertaking than any of the teams were expecting. The three teams of four were in the company of 45 other teams who faced climbing to the summit of Ben Nevis – the tallest peak in the British Isles, cycling 25 miles (on road) and canoeing a 3km course on Loch Lochy.
Despite severe weather conditions with 80mph gusts of wind and thick hill fog, along with some crippling injuries, all three teams conquered Ben Nevis. The majority went on to complete the full challenge which included cycling 25 miles over the hilly Scottish landscape and canoeing across Loch Lochy with fewer team members than expected.
When asked about the challenge, comments across the teams ranged from understated to exhilarated:
“The most gruelling thing I have ever done, I loved it!!” – Andrew Whiteley, Provisio
“Great mountain to conquer, amazing views, well worth the climb. It was certainly a challenge and a great workout for the heart and lungs. Coming down was unexpectedly difficult it certainly maxed out the thighs and knees, but what an achievement for oneself and our charity Tom’s Trust.” – Lorraine Annan, Virtual Business Source
“The title summed it up, it is a challenge, next one?” – Tim Maris, UHY Hacker Young
The challenge was completed in under 12 hours, and everyone is very proud of their personal and team efforts, supported of course by their clients, friends and family who helped fundraise £11,695.45 (including gift aid – as at the end of the fundraising period 12 October 2015).
Brain tumours are the biggest cancer killer of children under the age of 15, most people are not aware of this fact. Provisio’s managing director, Andrew Whiteley, and his family were unlucky enough to have it written in bold and underlined in November 2010 when their son Tom passed away after a 7 month fight against a particularly deadly type of tumour aged 9.
This is a devastating disease on all levels and Tom's Trust are dedicated to supporting this group of children and their families from the point of diagnosis, through treatment and after treatment offering them the best possible rehabilitation support available.
Children with brain tumours need support from diagnosis to outcome and beyond. The support of a complete rehabilitation service has been missing from the care they are given at NHS hospitals and this is where Tom's Trust comes in.
In partnership with Addenbrooke’s Hospital and two other charities, Tom’s Trust has funded and launched “Brainbow” – the UK’s first NHS rehabilitation service dedicated to children with brain tumours. This service consists of
· Clinical Psychologist (Tom’s Trust funded)
· Occupational Therapist
· Speech and language therapist
· Programme Co-ordinator
The work the team are doing is already making a huge difference to the children who need it. Their fundraising initiative is now focused on raising further funds for a second Clinical Psychologist at Addenbrooke's Hospital, Cambridge as well as working with a second UK hospital to fund a similar essential service to that in place in Cambridge. Tom's Trust's work will not stop until all children with brain tumours have access to this type of service.
To expand and continue this service so that all affected children in the East Anglia region can be given the best chance to achieve their true potential, Tom’s Trust need to raise £150,000 over the next two years. All three companies are very pleased to have helped them on their way.