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Fundraisers endure 100km trek across Sahara Desert to raise £50,000 for local charity Nugent

3 months ago

By The Guide Liverpool

Fundraisers endure 100km trek across Sahara Desert to raise £50,000 for local charity Nugent

Brave fundraisers who endured searing temperatures and harsh conditions in a 100km trek across the Sahara Desert have raised more than £50,000 for Liverpool charity, Nugent.

A group of 14 people undertook the massive fundraising effort – Step by Step: Nugent Fundraisers Trek the Sahara for Life-Changing Initiatives – earlier this month to support its services and projects across Merseyside.

And the grand total has gone beyond any hopes and expectations with a staggering £55,698.39 collected so far!

Nugent CEO Jo Henney, who took part in the challenge said:

“The generosity our fundraisers have received has surpassed all expectations, and we are immensely grateful for everyone’s support,”

“The trek was no walk in the park, but the camaraderie of the group kept spirits high, propelling them through every testing moment. Their commitment and dedication to the challenge from day one has been extraordinary, from intense training schedules to organising their own fundraising events.

“Everyone has done their utmost to raise as much as possible for the people we care for across our services and within our local communities.”

Ainsley Briscoe, income generation and fundraising manager for Nugent, which cares for, educates, and protects young people and adults through schools, care homes, community and social work.

Nugent Sahara Fundraiser

She said:

“The total raised already was so much more than anticipated – what they have done is amazing.

“After speaking to our supporters on their return, many said it was horrific, brutal and the most difficult challenge they had ever experienced. From the immense heat, blistered feet, no phones, and no obvious end in sight when they were walking, it just shows how truly committed they are to our cause.

“Despite the physical and mental challenges, they are all made up to have achieved what they have, and particularly because they all chose the specific projects they raised money for, often something very close to their hearts.”

Many of the Nugent team took part as well as some of their key corporate partners, like Debbie King, director at Building Careers UK, and Howard Lewis, general manager of Novotel Liverpool Paddington Village, who chose to raise funds for an outdoor multi-gym at Marydale, Nugent’s secure children’s home for children who are vulnerable, traumatised and disadvantaged. 

Nugent Sahara Fundraiser

Ainsley adds:

“Howard and Debbie came to meet young people in the secure unit so they knew who they were raising funds for and how they would benefit.

“They sent videos from the Sahara so the young people could see what they were doing, something they might never get the chance to do, and so there were wonderful relationships established too.”

Leon McCowan, director at Your Business Mobile, sales coach at The Sales Dojo and lecturer at Liverpool University, says: “It was tough, and it was tremendous. The pain, the hunger, the aches, the mental challenges will stay on the Sahara; but the things that will stay with us are the bonds we built, and the friendships we started.”

Among the other projects that will benefit from the money raised are:

Our Future Now:

 Empowering some of the most excluded young people in society to transform their lives, the initiative is built on four pillars: employability, memorable experiences, accommodation, and poverty alleviation. Jo Henney, Nugent CEO, and Tracey King, Nugent’s head of adult homes, raised money for this.

Packages for Families Escaping Domestic Abuse:

 Kev Williams, Nugent’s head of governance; Andrew Allen, chief executive at Aabyss; Leon McCowan; Frankie Doughty, trading operations manager and associate director at BCB Group, and Jenny Ness, Nugent’s head of adoption, chose this project which enables more families to safely leave a home where violence, or the threat of violence, is present. 

Sensory Garden at The Orchards

The aims is to create a sensory garden for children and young people with mild to moderate learning difficulties, physical disabilities, are neuro-diverse and/or have mental health needs.  Keith Wilde, Nugent’s head of community, selected this.

Nugent’s Crisis Fund:

Hetal Mainwaring, Nugent’s head of people, chose this project which helps families and individuals living in local communities who are facing extreme poverty. 

Lime House Dementia Garden:

Dave Verburg, managing director at Mission Success, raised funds for Nugent’s dementia garden, a project very close to his heart since his mum sadly passed away with the condition last December.

Wildlife Garden at The Willows

The idea is to develop a wildlife garden for bird watching, foraging, and therapy animals for young people aged 13 to 18, who have been assessed as needing the positive experiences and emotional support a residential setting can provide. This was chosen by fundraiser Clare Ellis, director at Wellness in the City Liverpool, who also visited Nugent’s children’s home before raising funds for this, with wellness behind the ethos of everything she does.

Jo Henney thanked everyone who signed up and took part in ‘the once in a lifetime’ adventure, saying:

“Your commitment will make a significant impact on the lives of those we care for across our services and within our local communities. Every penny raised will contribute to improving lives and creating positive change.”

Find more information about Nugent here.

Find all the latest Liverpool news here.

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