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Claire Bear 3K raises over £20,000 for Claire House

4 weeks ago

Claire Bear 3K raises over £20,000 for Claire House

Claire House held its annual Claire Bear 3K event in Wirral, with 550 participants raising more than £20,000 for the local children’s hospice.

Hundreds of families turned out for the fun run, organised by and for Claire House, at Birkenhead Park on Sunday. 

Siblings encouraged younger brothers and sisters as they ran, walked or scooted together along the route to help seriously ill babies, children and their families. Claire House mascot Claire Bear posed for photos and handed out well-deserved medals on the finish line.

Parents Lucy and James Knowles took their girls Orlaith, eight, and Meabh, five, to join in the fun in memory of their baby daughter Niamh, who was supported 10 years ago.

Lucy said:

“We can never thank Claire House enough for what they’ve done for our family. Niamh was seven weeks old when she died. She stayed at Claire House for four weeks before she passed away. Every member of staff was amazing. This is our way of helping them. The Claire Bear 3k was such a lovely, fun event for Niamh’s sisters to take part in.” 

Mum Esther Denton was there with her 17-month-old son Ronnie, who has respite stays at the Wirral hospice, and was cheering on husband John and son Eddie, nine.

Claire Bear 3K

Esther, from Thornton, said:

“Every time Ronnie goes to Claire House, it’s a boost for me. I think you feel less alone with the care side of things. So, I have proper mum time with him because they take care of his needs, while I’m able to be his mummy.

“Taking part in the Claire Bear 3k was our way of supporting Claire House. When they crossed the finish line, I sobbed like a baby! It was a great day and raising money helps Claire House carry on the amazing work they do.”

Despite not being able to walk, four-year-old Luke Tickle led his brothers Jacob, 10, and Dylan, five, round the sunny park, proudly wearing charity t-shirts and Claire Bear ears. 

Mum Diane, from Ellesmere Port, said:

“We wouldn’t be able cope without Claire House and the help they give, not just to Luke but to our whole family. The boys loved it and can’t wait to do it again! Every turn of his chair wheels, and every step we took, was a thank you to Claire House and what they do for us, because they are our lifeline.”

Meanwhile, six-year-old Lucas Cairns from Neston picked up his medal, with his PE teacher dad Lee, later followed by mum Emma and little sister Orla, two, who whizzed along on her scooter.

Claire Bear 3K

Lee said:

“Lucas really enjoyed running alongside his family and completed his 3k in about 12 minutes and 30 seconds. He wanted to do his best for the poorly children. The atmosphere was brilliant. It was a fantastic family day, and he was so happy to take his medal into assembly.”

Events Fundraiser Mark Pearson said:

“The Claire Bear 3K is a perfect event for little legs to take part and possibly get their first medal, while raising vital funds for other local children. 

“It’s a community event where everyone can get together, have some fun in the sun and make a massive difference.

“The idea started during the Covid pandemic, when local children were doing lots of amazing things for charity, and hundreds did their own Claire Bear 3K on their streets. It’s fantastic to now have an annual event where families can gather in the park and take part together. And it’s amazing Claire Bear makes an appearance too!”

Claire House cares for more seriously and terminally ill children than ever before and relies on the support of the community to keep the hospice doors open and have nurses working in Merseyside, Cheshire and North Wales.

Find out more information on Claire House website.

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