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St Clare Hospice Firewalk was a blazing success

Charity / Tue 2nd Jan 2024 at 09:59am


THE Firewalk fundraiser returned to St Clare Hospice this autumn and it made for a scorching evening of fun and fiery entertainment. Over 20 people took part in the event which raised over £11,000 for St Clare Hospice.

On the evening delicious food was provided by The Chicken Strip as drummers from Jazz Explorium set the scene alongside fire entertainment by Jodie Hellen from TF Productions. Friends and family gathered as brave participants walked over 600-degree burning wood embers.

Firewalker Sophia Woollams from Harlow bravely took on the challenge. Sophia decided to take part after St Clare Hospice cared for her mother-in-law Rebecca.  

Sophia said ‘I decided to take part in the Firewalk in memory of my mother-in-law Rebecca who I called ‘Mum’. Mum’s treatment meant that she was left with a burning sensation in her feet. When I saw the event advertised on Facebook it resonated with me and I felt this would be a great way to remember her and raise money. Mum walked through fire during her courageous battle.

‘St Clare Hospice meant we were able to be with Mum and I could bring in her grandchildren. Her family was everything to her and it made such a difference to us that we could be there during her last few days.’

‘When we came into the hospice Mum instantly relaxed. I had never been to a hospice before, it was nothing like I expected – it was bright and welcoming and it was a relief that Mum could experience that peace and calm in the last few days of her life.’

After completing the daring challenge Sophia said-

‘You don’t truly comprehend what the Firewalk is until you are stood at the edge, feeling the wall of intense heat and staring down at the glowing hot embers inches from your toes.

Immediately after the walk I felt pure disbelief that I did it, followed closely with a surge of pride, after looking up to emotional cheers from my family and friends. I can’t talk to Mum in the usual sense, I can’t hold her hand or ask her for advice, but the Firewalk allowed me to still do something and feel close to her. To contribute to the current and future families needing St Clare was a privilege and an experience I will never forget.’ 

Family and friends came along to support Sophia and she has so far raised over £500, an amazing achievement that will help St Clare Hospice continue to provide care for the local community.

Event organiser Bec Beattie said, ‘Fundraisers showed resilience and courage as they hot-footed it over burning wood embers. This was a great event to organise, supporters cheered on family and friends as they bravely took on the challenge and it was a brilliant way to come together and raise money.’

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