There have been many ways we’ve found to raise money for the Healthy Living Club @ Lingham Court (HLC@LC) – stalls at summer fairs, collections at tube stations and, of course, applying for grants. But the most heart-warming of all has to be through sponsored events and fund-raising via sites such as Local Giving.
HLC@LC is a Lambeth-based community group primarily aimed at those living with dementia and their carers. So inspiring and innovative is the club’s approach that numerous people have taken part in sponsored events, just to raise money for us.
However, it’s those who have a direct connection that know just how much good the club does for its 90+ members per year. One such example is a young man called Tom Sargeant, whose much-loved Grandfather, Patrick Fitzgerald (pictured), was a long-term member until his death earlier this year. Together, Patrick and his wife, Anne benefitted from the love, support and downright fun generated by the members. Knowing that it would have made his grandfather very proud, Tom will be running the London Marathon on 24 April this year in his memory. https://localgiving.org/tomsargeant
Tom said: ‘My grandfather made a huge impression on my life and on everyone who was fortunate enough to meet him. The Healthy Living Club provides people with dementia and their carers with an opportunity to be with each other and enjoy themselves together’.
We are hoping that some club members will be going to cheer Tom on his marathon efforts and we thank him from the bottom of our hearts. Because Patrick loved music and was a drummer in the Boys Brigade, it’s appropriate that the money Tom raises will be helping us to continue our programme of musical activities, including the hugely popular and innovative Rhythm NO Blues sessions.
Elsewhere in the crowds of dedicated runners on 24 April this year will be Louise Griffiths, who is already well over half way towards her fundraising target, starting by raising £210 in the first 30 minutes, and invites you to check out her latest progress on the Local Giving page https://localgiving.org/griffisrunningamarathon
It’s not just relatives of our members who are inspired to do something amazing to support us. Having found out about the club from people who follow us on Twitter, a number of extraordinary individuals have kindly chosen to raise funds for us.
While Steve Cordery was born near Lambeth where HLC@LC helps so many people, he had no connection with the club when he ran the Great South Race. But his father had vascular dementia and, as Steve says, ‘I know he really would have benefitted from such a club had one been available in his area.’ Steve raised more than £744 and the money was used as a contribution towards the cost of paying for our coordinator, which made a real difference, since core costs are so difficult to fund.
In 2013, Jacqueline Grove ran the Paris Marathon on behalf of HLC@LC and promoted her fundraising efforts on Facebook, with a link to Local Giving, which resulted in the club benefitting from a very generous figure of around £1,000. Also from far afield, her sister, Jillian Grove walked a 13-mile section of the West Highland Way, despite suffering from chronic back pain. She exceeded her fund-raising target by a massive amount and chose the club just because her grandmother lived with dementia.
Simply visiting the club once is often enough to inspire generous individuals to offer their time and raise much-needed money to help our members sing, dance, exercise and eat a healthy meal surrounded by friends and fun.
Hannah’s parents visited the club just once before her father became too ill to attend, yet she continues to support members by running a regular Sunday ‘Crafternoon’ session and has also completed a sponsored walk. She knows that her father would have loved to continue attending the club and Hannah’s mother also benefitted from the advice and help she received at the carer’s support group, which takes place once a month during our Wednesday sessions.
Local Giving not only gives supporters a way to maximize their fundraising efforts, but also runs an annual local hero initiative, where the site donates an extra £5,000 in prizes to the causes supported by the top 20 fundraisers. Please go to www.localgiving.org to see how you can help our heroes add even more to their totals and become local heroes!