Help Dawn walk 2022km to raise £2,022 for charity
By David Wood
A Gloucester woman is appealing for suggestions for great Gloucestershire walks to help her raise £2,022 for a county charity in 2022.
Dawn Wilkins, aged 55, is hoping to walk 2022 km throughout the county this year on a journey to support a local charity close to her heart.
Dawn has invested in a sturdy pair of walking shoes to take on a Gloucestershire fitness challenge to raise funds for Sue Ryder Leckhampton Court Hospice after previous fundraising plans had been 'given the boot' by the pandemic and multiple lockdowns over the past two years.
Dawn said: "My partner, Gav, and I go out walking lots and when we were out walking over Christmas we looked up how far we had walked the previous year and it was in the thousands of kilometres. We felt this was a good total, but we really wanted to stretch it out further for our fundraising challenge. That's when we decided to set a challenge to cover 2022 km across the county in 2022."
Dawn says she doesn't have any organised official walks to get her across the finish line to the final total, but says she would love to hear from people with suggestions for great walks in Gloucestershire to give her inspiration.
"Over the past few years we have been restricted to keeping our walking local, but we are so lucky in Gloucestershire to have so many amazing walks on our very own doorstep."
"I love walking by the canal. Once we took the train to Stroud then walked along the Stroudwater Canal and then along the Gloucester to Sharpness canal back home to Gloucester. That was such a stunning walk and one we plan to recreate.
"We are going to take it how it comes really. We've got the map out and we have been looking at odd name places to make things a bit more fun. We spotted a 'Dog Lane' and 'Cat Brain Quarry' the other day so we are going to create a walk around that.
"We're also going to cover the highest point in Gloucestershire on Cleeve Hill, take on parts of the Cotswold Way and take some trips out to the beautiful Forest of Dean too. We really are spoilt for choice here in our home county and I'd love to hear suggestions from others on walks we should consider to help us along our way."
Anyone with great Gloucestershire walk suggestions for Dawn and Gav can email them to the fundraising team at Sue Ryder Leckhampton Court Hospice by emailing email@example.com
Sue Ryder Leckhampton Court Hospice is a charity close to Dawn's heart as it cared for her gran, her gran's twin sister and a number of Dawn's friends in recent years.
"I wanted to do something to say thank you to Sue Ryder and help them to continue to be there for families who need their support. The care they give is fantastic and they have been there and cared for my family members and friends so wonderfully over recent years.
"The hospice is such a caring place and there is such a feeling of peace and serenity there that I know is important to so many people."
After sharing her fundraising fitness plans, Dawn says she has been overwhelmed by offers of support from friends and family to get involved and walk with her too.
"I will be doing the majority of the walking with Gav, but friends have said the challenge sounds really good and have offered to walk alongside me as well for some of our walks. It's lovely to have their support and company.
"Breaking the challenge down, it works out that I need to cover 5.5km every single day. We have not met our target for January, but I am hoping when the lighter evenings and better weather comes we'll be out walking for longer and getting the kilometres in."
"The beauty of this challenge is that I can fit it around all my other commitments and we can take it at our own pace. I like to be active and love being outdoors - it is such a boost to wellbeing. It gives you time and space to think.
"I'm really looking forward to spending time outside and getting a little bit fitter while I do it. Not only am I getting something out of this for me, but I am giving something back to our very special local hospice at the same time."
To donate to Dawn's charity challenge visit www.justgiving.com/fundraising/walkingthrough2022
For more information on Sue Ryder Leckhampton Court Hospice visit www.sueryder.org/leckhampton
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