G’day Helping Hearts fans, hope you are all well and happy new year to you, wherever you are in the world. Well, it’s a new year, with new things to do. 2013 was a year of incredible highs, with everything we managed to achieve with the charity, to the worst lows we’ve ever experienced, with my dad sadly dying from cancer in September and Cozzie’s mum being diagnosed with cancer herself just a week or so later.
The last few months have seen us step away from the charity for a bit as we took time to reflect, but with Cozzie’s mum on the mend – thinking of you every day, Barbara, kia kaha! – it’s time to move onwards and upwards.
Thanks to our wonderful supporters and fellow athletes (ha…!) we’ve raised more than £5,000 now for Southmead Hospital’s heart units, a fantastic amount of which we’re very proud. The money is going to good use, and we’ll update you on what it’s being spent on shortly.
After having to cancel one or two events at the end of last year, we’ve now gradually getting our final few events in the bag. First up is the Brathay Windermere Marathon, a marathon around Lake Windermere in the Lake District on May 18th. I can’t quite believe I’ve let myself in for this, but I did promise you all that I’d do one (a marathon, that is…), so if you fancy a nice weekend away to join us or jeer at us, get in touch. There’s also an awesome outdoor/mountaineering festival nearby that weekend, with guests such as explorer Sir Ranulph Fiennes and uber-triathlete and Cozzie’s heroine Chrissie Wellington, so it might be a nice way to make the most of the weekend.
We’re also looking at doing a Tough Guy/Tough Mudder event in July, a decent bike ride sportive and a finish with a flurry with a three-day kayak along the length of the River Wye. We’re keen to enter these events in teams, so if you want to join us for any of them let us know!
We’ve also posted our stories of two of our events from last year on to our website (www.helpinghearts2013.wordpress.com), the Bristol to Paris bike ride and the Three Peaks challenge, which we did with friends Den and Nic – well worth a read.
So, thanks for sticking with us throughout the last year, for all your encouragement and support through the dark times – it means a hell of a lot to us. We haven’t given up – we’d never give up – as we’ve got too much to be thankful for. So many of you have already donated, but if you haven’t and want to help a great cause, visit http://www.justgiving.com/helpinghearts2013.
And once again, thanks from the bottom of my heart to Cozzie. Mum and I couldn’t have got through the last six months without her, she has given me support than I could possibly ever describe, and Helping Hearts without her just wouldn’t be worth doing.
Plenty of updates to come soon, so keep in touch!
Dom – January 24, 2014