It’s traditional at this time of year to look back and review the year that’s drawing to a close, and to look ahead to see what the next might bring. The close of this year also marks for me personally a significant change, of which more anon…
Inspiration for Life has continued to grow, and to gain more friends and supporters over the course of 2015.
We joined forces with colleagues in the department of Urban Studies & Planning to honour Dr Victoria Henshaw, who died in October 2014. The 24 Hour Inspire 2015 was dedicated to her as well as to Tim, and her friends contributed in various ways to the event as well as joining Tim’s team at the annual Endcliffe Park 10k run.
The latter event was a huge success in raising funds for Western Park Hospital Cancer Charity, one of the charities with whom we’ve been linked since the beginning. Rotherham Hospice and Impact Young Heroes were the beneficiaries from the 24 Hour Inspire, and we also made a donation to the Snowdon Trust, in support of a student with disabilities.
As well as these two key fundraising events, we continue to receive donations throughout the year via our website, and also thanks to individual and team efforts – Jez (proprietor of John’s Van which has kept Hicks Building staff and students fortified with bacon sarnies for the last few decades) did the Brighton Marathon wearing an Inspiration for Life vest, and just last week PhySoc held a pub quiz to raise funds for us.
There have been a couple of changes on the Board. Ruth Arnold stepped down and Chris Sexton (Director of UoS Corporate Information & Computing Services) joined us. We’re very grateful to both of them. And we’re about to lose Tracy Hilton, someone else who’s been at the heart of Inspiration for Life from the start as she goes on maternity leave and then relocates to the wrong side of the Pennines… Nicky Thompson will be joining us on the Board in the New Year. Again, we’re grateful to them both – it’s wonderful that so many busy and talented people are keen to be involved with Inspiration for Life.
So, looking ahead to 2016, what’s in store?
On a personal note, I will be retiring from my post in the University in the New Year. I will not be retiring as Chair of Inspiration for Life, in fact I hope to have more time to devote to the charity, in particular to build closer relationships with our partner charities, and diversify our fundraising activities.
Our fourth 24 Hour Inspire will take plate on 12-13 May in the Hicks Building, LT1. We’ve got some great speakers lined up already, so keep an eye on our Facebook and Twitter as we get closer to the event, for details of the programme. The funds we raise from this year’s event will be donated to two charities supporting young people with cancer, Impact Young Heroes, with whom we’ve been working for a while now, and the Teenage Cancer Trust‘s Youth Empowerment Programme in the Yorkshire & Humberside region. We’ve been working with Impact Young Heroes for a while now, and it’s very appropriate that the proceeds of the 24 Hour Inspire will be shared with another organisation that focuses on supporting young people with cancer.
So, to all of you who have supported us – as speakers, volunteers, fundraisers, runners, audience members, buskers, bakers, etc etc – thank you, from all of us on the Board. Stay with us – keep on following us on Twitter (@inspire4L) and keeping an eye on our Facebook page and our website.
And have a lovely Christmas, all of you, and an absolutely splendid 2016.
Inspiration for Life Board of Trustees:
Catherine Annabel (Chair), Sue Richardson (Secretary), Mike Weir (Treasurer), Richard Jones, David Mowbray, Greg Oldfield, Tony Ryan, Chris Sexton, Nicky Thompson
Co-opted members: John Cockburn, Matt Mears, Lee Thompson
PhySoc ex officio members for 2015-16: Colleen Winter, Maddy Thorniley