As has become a tradition, December is a month for running, jogging and walking for many Sue Ryder supporters, staff and volunteers.
You’d be right if you were thinking that December is not normally associated with being a month for deciding to lace the trainers up and get a lot more miles under your belt. However, thanks to one of our incredible supporters – Jackie – December has become the month for the Daily Dash.
I’m Henry, and I’m one of the Team Captains here in the events team, helping supporters through their events journey. I’ve done a decent amount of running in my time at Sue Ryder, taking on events like the Royal Parks and Reading Half Marathons, the London 10,000 and of course the December Daily Dash.
How the Daily Dash was born
Let’s rewind a few years and look at the start of this amazing challenge. Jackie, along with her husband Mark, had experienced the support that is on offer from our Leckhampton Court Hospice near Cheltenham after her dad fell ill.
Following this, they decided they wanted to do something to give back and so the Daily Dash was born. Jackie, Mark and some close friends elected to run walk or jog five kilometres (three miles) every day in December. This started out small but quickly grew to a big event with participants internationally.
Last year (in 2017) nearly 200 participants took on the challenge, including me!
I quickly found out that while I’m okay at training to run a specific race, I’m terrible at keeping up with my training afterwards and so running all 31 days would be a huge challenge. I elected to try and run as many as I could (Christmas-related hangovers allowing, of course) and ended up running 25 of the 31 days, something I was really proud to have achieved.
420 participants across 16 countries
This year I’m just one part of a massive event with nearly 420 participants across 16 countries.
Three quarters of the participants are first timers, and from what we’ve seen shared so far on the Daily Dash Facebook page, lots of them are having a fantastic time racking up the miles, regardless of whether it’s cold, wet or dark.
Even four years in, Jackie and Mark and the rest of the Daily Dash team are still just as passionate about being there when it really matters and helping people to take on this challenge to support the palliative, neurological and bereavement support that we provide across the country.
Last year’s event raised over £12,000 – that's close to 700 hours of helping people live the fullest life possible.
The Dash team’s goal this year is to surpass that, to provide an unwavering source of support and, with a third of the challenge still ahead, that's exactly what they've done - raising over £14,500!
Support the Daily Dash
If you've been inspired by this, you can still support the Daily Dash. You can join up and do the last part of the challenge or support in other ways.
Fancy doing a different running event for Sue Ryder but have some question? We've put some FAQs together to answer them!
National Events Fundraiser
I've been at Sue Ryder since June 2013, and my role is to make sure that you have the best experience possible as a member of Team Sue Ryder. I started running at the beginning of 2016 to improve my fitness, and now regularly take part in races, often alongside Team Sue Ryder runners!
Follow me on Twitter @HenryFEvents or email firstname.lastname@example.org.