One of the many advantages of living in the valley is that there is a very active social club. The club organises the November 5th Bonfire and firework display, outings, and events, and a children’s party. It was at a meeting to organise the children’s party, just after the Christmas of 2004, when the dreadful events of the Boxing Day Tsunami were fresh in everyone’s mind, that the club decided to organise a fund raising walk, and to get others to link their events to our appeal. Amazingly the events raised well over £14,000.
This year the awfull New Year Haiti Earthquake was the major news story at the time of our AGM, so we decided to raise some money for that devastated nation. We would reproduce some of the ideas that had been so successful for the Tsunami appeal. The only thing that was causing some hesitation was that we knew that we could not match the success of the earlier walk. We were clear that we should not even use the earlier event as a yardstick, and that, even if we only raised a thousand or two it would be worth doing. We decided on March 7th for the walk. Before that Dan, one of our neighbours who is a part time fireman, organised a car wash at the Fire Station, which we linked into with a cake stall and raffle. The 7th March was close on a perfect day, a sharp frost in the morning but glorious sunshine all day. We had a one mile nature walk for families with small children, a two mile stroll for older participants, a six mile walk, and an eight mile walk, and an eight mile run.
The Visitor Centre, which doesn’t open until the end of March was opened for the day, staffed by volunteers, providing soup, tea and cake cake. Guides led each walking group, all walkers paid £5 for the walk and many had brought sponsorship money as well. All the food sold had been donated, so the only cost we had to deduct from the money raised was a small amount for our public liability insurance.
So far we have raised over £4000, and there are still three events to follow which will further contribute to the total. One participant has written that she felt a little guilty having such a lovely day when the reason for it ws so dreadful, but also another wrote that it is good to live in a caring community