May 1 2019
Andrew Knight, chief executive residential care, Jacqui White, marketing director, and Tony Weedon, strategic programme director, will spend 15 days cycling from The Potteries care home in Poole to Tor Na Dee care home in Aberdeen. Along the 800 mile journey, they will visit 26 Care UK homes where team members and residents have been planning fundraising events and decorating old bicycles to provide a traditional welcome for the intrepid riders. They will be joined at various stages by colleagues working in the homes as well as other directors including Care UK’s group CEO Mike Parish.
The three charities to benefit from the fundraising will be:
As well as getting family, friends and colleagues to sponsor them, the three riders have also asked suppliers if they will back the ride with sponsorship donations. In addition, care home teams and colleagues in the Colchester support office will also be fundraising to support the grand total. Care UK will also match fund monies raised by colleagues in homes and offices. Ride 800 has already raised many thousands of pounds with more fundraising events and activities planned to take place throughout May at homes across the country.
Commenting on the 800 mile ride, Andrew Knight said: “Even though all three of us have been putting in the training hours, I think it’s fair to say the reality of such a challenge is becoming very real and will be a true test of our endurance both mentally and physically. A big motivating factor over the last month has been the inspiring efforts of the 26 home we intend to visit and their creativity and energies in planning special fund raising events and activities. Residents and our colleagues are well known for their warm and friendly welcomes which will be key to keeping our motivation levels high and will spur us on when no doubt the British weather throws us a few challenges. The underpinning goal of the Ride 800 challenge is to raise monies and funds for the three charities which do fantastic work in the care sector providing support, driving positive change and caring for those in our communities and the profession who need it most.”
Jacqui White added: “As if the physical challenge of cycling every day for 15 days isn’t tough enough, all three of us have pledged to continue our director duties once we reach our destination each day so it’s going to be a very busy 15 days. But it’s for great causes so we know the effort is going to be worth it.”
Although Andrew and Jacqui have been regular cyclists for a while, the third rider, Tony Weedon, is a relative newcomer to the sport. He admitted: “Until a few months ago, I hadn’t even ridden on this kind of road bike so I’ve had the steepest training curve imaginable. From sliding across wet cow pats on the road to getting to grips with pedal cleats, it’s been an interesting few months but I think I’m pretty much ready to tackle the challenge and raise lots of money for three very worthy causes.”
If anyone would like to sponsor the Care UK Ride 800 team, they can go to https://uk.virginmoneygiving.com/CareUKRide800
The team aim to publish a regular blog as they undertake the ride – this will be available via http://www.careuk.com/care-homes/blog/ride800