• Thu. Nov 30th, 2023

North East Connected

Hopping Across The North East From Hub To Hub

Charity fundraising is a family affair

When it comes to raising money for Tynedale Hospice at Home it’s a real family affair for one father and son!

Father of four, Matt Cawood, 46, who lives in Newton, Northumberland is hoping to raise £2,000 for Tynedale Hospice at Home by running a 7 ½  mile loop over a 24 hour period.  He is hoping to clock up an incredible 100 miles during the gruelling challenge which starts at midday on 18 August in Keswick, Cumbria.

Meanwhile, his son Archie Weeks, 10, who goes to Hexham Middle School is taking part in the Junior Great North Run, a 4km run around Newcastle’s quayside on Saturday, 9 September.

Matt is running in the memory of his Dad, John Cawood, a retired senior partner with Newcastle-based Sinton’s Solicitors, who died of a sarcoma in 2015.

Matt said: “When my Dad retired he moved to the Lake District and I have many happy memories of visiting him there which is why I chose to do the challenge in the Lake District. He received excellent care from Macmillan nurses in his final days which made such a difference and he was able to die at home, surrounded by his family. This meant a lot to him so I know, first hand, what a difference being nursed at home made to him and to all of us.

“I was keen to take on a challenge in his memory to support a local charity and Tynedale Hospice at Home was the obvious choice.  The nursing care they provide is second to none and if my Dad had lived locally to me I know we would have called upon its valuable services.”

Matt is being joined in the challenge by his younger brother James, 35, who lives in Reading. James aims to raise £2,000 for Sarcoma UK, and they hope friends and family will join them in the challenge, doing the odd mile here and there to keep them company.

The pair will start in Keswick, run out of Portinscale and up to the Newlands Valley, their Dad’s favourite valley, and then head back to Keswick town centre in a figure of eight loop.

Matt and James have called their challenge ‘24 hours with Dad.’

Matt continued: “We named the challenge ‘24 hours with Dad’ as it’s taking place in county he loved and  it will be an opportunity to focus on him and his memory as we clock up the laps.”  

Matt, who is no stranger to ultra-marathon running, and runs in excess of 50 miles a week, is still nervous about the challenge ahead.  

“Running the same loop over a 24-hour period requires a different type of stamina to marathon running. In a marathon, every mile you clock up is a mile closer to the finish line, but running a continuous loop means you’re never any closer to the end.   It’s definitely a case of training your mind to keep focussed and motivated.

“One thing’s for certain though, knowing that I’ll be raising money for Tynedale Hospice at Home is all the motivation I’ll need but I’ll make sure I plan an interesting play list for my Ipod and have a nice glass of red wine waiting for me once the challenge is over.”

Matt’s son Archie will be joining another 50 Junior Great North Runners who are running in support of Tynedale Hospice at Home. He is hoping to raise £300.

Like his Dad, Archie is a keen sportsman. A mad-keen footballer, he has just started playing for the Prudhoe Magpies football team and has been out with his Dad doing training runs in preparation for the big day.

Archie said: “I really like running and sport in general and thought I would really enjoy taking part in the Junior Great North Run.  I know some people who have used Tynedale Hospice at Home and as my Dad was raising money for the Hospice I thought I would do the same.”

All the funds that Matt and Archie raise will support the work of Tynedale Hospice at Home which provides palliative nursing care to people in their own homes, Family Support Services and a Hospital Transport Service to people living in Tynedale, West Northumberland, Ponteland and the surrounding areas.

Cathy Bates, community fundraiser, Tynedale Hospice at Home, said: “We wish Matt and Archie all the very best in their respective challenges. We’ve got so many different ways people can get involved in supporting the Hospice – whatever age or interests you have – and Matt and Archie are wonderful example of this.   We rely on the generosity and creativity of people like them to help raise 90% of the funds we need to run our vital services  

To support Matt in his fundraising efforts you can sponsor him at www.justgiving.com/fundraising/Matt-Cawood24hrswithdad

To support Archie in his fundraising efforts you can sponsor him at https://www.justgiving.com/fundraising/archieweeks

By Emily