Fundraisers make it a family affair for Willen Hospice

    Three different families have individually conquered their own incredible challenges to show their thanks to Willen Hospice after caring for their relatives.

    Family of four, Shaun and Kelly McManus, with their daughter’s Ellie and Freya, clocked up over 1000 miles of exercise in just one month. They did it anyway possible, cycling, running, walking and swimming, raising an incredible family fortune of £2,500!

    Shaun McManus said, “My wife, Kelly, and I have personally witnessed the extraordinary care that the staff at Willen Hospice provided. They looked after my Mum, and a couple of years later they cared for Kelly’s best friend.

    “When the restrictions of Covid-19 were kicking in, it became clear that the Hospice's income would be seriously affected, we decided to incorporate staying fit with raising some much needed money. We all worked hard to complete the 1000 miles, crossing the virtual finish line with a walk around Willen Lake, finishing at the Hospice; that was a special moment. The McManus family are very proud to support Willen Hospice.”

    From one family to another, Chad Lambert and his relatives went across the globe with their ‘Around the World in 24 Hours for Willen Hospice’ challenge, fundraising in memory of his Mum, Janice, who sadly died in 2007 from skin cancer. Chad’s family took on a 24-hour relay, with each leg being completed by a family member by either walking, running, or cycling, before virtually handing over the ‘baton’ to the next person via video call. The challenge saw them cover over 100 miles, visiting three continents and five time zones, with relatives in the UK, Australia, and both coasts of America. Their challenge started and finished at Willen Hospice, and thanks to their amazing efforts, they managed to raise £2,749.

    Chad said, “We all have this connection to Willen Hospice because of the amazing care Mum received there. During her final stay at Willen Hospice, they were an incredible support to Mum and to our family. The compassion they showed during that time will always stay with us. They allowed us to stay with Mum night and day, and even let us all camp out in one of the relatives’ rooms. We want to ensure that Willen Hospice continues to provide this amazing care and support for other families.”

    And just when the challenges couldn’t seem to get more extreme, along came Helen Butler-Landman tethered to a pole in her small garden pool. Helen, her daughter Evie, and Evie’s partner, Mitch Foard, decided to complete each part of a triathlon for 30 minutes, every hour, on the hour, for 12 hours. Helen swam a total of 16 miles, Mitch cycled 92.12miles, and Evie ran 28.8miles! The day was a triumph, with the three smashing their £250 target, and raising an incredible £930, in memory of Helen’s late husband, and Evie’s dad, Steve, and Helen’s Dad, and Evie’s Grandad, Terry, and Helen’s cousin Sally, who were all cared for by Willen Hospice.

    Helen said, “We wanted to support Willen Hospice during these tough times, as they helped us during our tough times.”

    Tracey Jago from the Hospice Events and Challenges team said: “Family and love is part of everyday life at Willen Hospice. We don’t just care for patients, but the entire family. We are so touched by how these families have come up with their own ways to support our work, and have absolutely smashed their targets. Thank you to them, and to everyone out there who is raising money for us in creative and innovative ways.”              

    Willen Hospice has been overwhelmed by the incredible support from the community, who have come together during these difficult times, to make sure that Willen Hospice does not close its doors, and continues to care for more families. The charity needs to raised £4.7million every year, that’s £9 a minute, to find out more about fundraising for Willen Hospice visit

    L-R: Helen Butler-Landman and Evie Butler, The McManus family, Chad Lambert’s family.

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