How University of Bristol sports teams have raised almost £25k for charity

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By Charlotte Carver, Match Day Reporter

Throughout lockdown, many of the University’s sports teams dedicated their active selves to fundraising for various charities and important causes and issues.

More recently, the University of Bristol Ladies Lacrosse Club either walked, ran, or cycled the 1500km it takes to get from Minneapolis to Washington D.C, all in aid of Black Lives Matter. This was a symbolic gesture to pay tribute to the death of George Floyd, who was killed in Minneapolis at the hands of a white police officer, sparking renewed debate in the American capital and indeed the globe.

It only took the team a remarkable seven days and has, so far, raised £650 for the ‘NAACP Foundation.’

UoB Ladies Lacrosse Club either walked, ran, or cycled the 1500km it takes to get from Minneapolis to Washington D.C, all in aid of Black Lives Matter

Also raising money for the Black Lives Matter campaign, the Bristol Medic Yoga Society held an online yoga session over the weekend, with all donations going towards ‘Show Racism the Red Card’, a UK based anti-racism charity.

Throughout June, the University of Bristol Spartans Basketball Club challenged themselves to complete 3000 push-ups each. They started this mission with the aim of raising £200 for ‘Teenage Cancer Trust’ but soon surpassed their target by raising over £1000.

The link to their fundraising page can be found on their Facebook page. Good luck for the last few days of the challenge.

Posted by University of Bristol Spartans Basketball Club on Monday, 1 June 2020

The University of Bristol Badminton Club, meanwhile, have taken a different approach to fundraising. Firstly, they held a bake-off with an entry donation to ‘Soil Association’, a UK charity which helps to fight climate change.

Following the success of the first initiative, the club challenged its members to a shuttlecock keepy-up competition. The entry fees were donated to the Trussell Trust which helps to support food banks across the country.

Given that they won an award for it, perhaps the most impressive work is that of University of Bristol Ladies Hockey Club.

The club managed to raise over £5500, which was then awarded with ‘Charitable Scheme of the Year’ at the end of season Sports Awards

They set themselves the grand task of running either 50, 75, or 100km in the space of two weeks in support of ‘Women’s Aid’, a charity which works against domestic abuse towards women and children.

The work of Women's Aid is, sadly, even more relevant during lockdown. As UBLHC Club Captain, Kate Dunn-Massey, pointed out, ‘there are lots of women unfortunately trapped by the perpetrators’ as a result of lockdown restrictions.  

The club managed to raise over £5500, an outstanding achievement. This was then recognised at the end of season Sports Awards run by the Student's Union, with the club being awarded ‘Charitable Scheme of the Year’.

Kate also noted the numerous benefits of a common goal like this. Not only does it go towards a charitable organisation, the regularity of exercise helped to keep ‘people motivated’. Similarly, it allowed them ‘to see how others are doing’ in a challenging time for all.

With their tour to Poreč over the Easter break cancelled, the University of Bristol Swimming and Water Polo Club joined 35 other University sports teams to run or walk the 970 miles it takes to get from Dover to Poreč.

40 members of the Swimming and Water Polo club participated in the ten-day challenge, which took just eight days to complete.

Combined, the participating teams from across the country have raised over £24,000. The chosen charity of ‘The Race to Poreč’ was Leonard Cheshire Disability, which was asking for donations in order to supply its staff with vital Personal Protective Equipment (PPE).

Chloe Howes, who organised the Bristol team's fundraising, explained to Epigram that initially the target was £10,000, but that because they ‘smashed £16,000, they've upped the target to £26,000.’

Another team who decided to make the most of their cancelled tour over the Easter break was the intramural football team, Engmaths FC. Instead of their planned trip to Benidorm, the team decided to run the distance from Bristol to Benidorm.

They gave themselves a month to complete the 1450km 'trip', though found themselves ‘in’ Benidorm with three days to spare. Altogether, they raised over £2000 in aid of ‘NHS Charities Together’.

Setting themselves the challenge of running from Bristol to Bermuda, the University of Bristol Men’s Hockey Club decided to support the charity ‘iPartner India’.

Instead of their planned trip to Benidorm, the team decided to run the distance from Bristol to Benidorm

37 members ran a total of 6530km, beating the original target of 5380km. They have managed to raise almost £5000 from their efforts.

Finally, the University of Bristol Squash Club decided they would walk, run, or cycle the 945 miles it would take to cover the distance it would take to tour each British National Squash Championship venue since 1985.

After reaching the final venue of their ‘Tour de Britain’ in Nottingham, the club have raised over £530 for ‘NHS Charities Together’.

A massive congratulations to all the sports teams who have taken the time to challenge themselves in the name of charity, you have all done a great job.

Featured: University of Bristol Swimming and Water Polo Club


Has your sports club done any charity work over lockdown?

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