Virtual Rainbow Run nets £70k for children’s hospices

PUBLISHED: 07:11 07 July 2020 | UPDATED: 07:11 07 July 2020

Harry Penwarden taking on the 5km for CHSW.

Harry Penwarden taking on the 5km for CHSW.


A virtual fundraising challenge has raised more than £70,000 for a children’s charity.

Lila taking part in the Rainbow Run.Lila taking part in the Rainbow Run.

Children’s Hospice South West (CHSW) had to cancel its three Rainbow Runs in Wraxall, Exeter and Newquay this summer due to the coronavirus pandemic.

In a bid to raise money for the charity, the fundraising team decided to give supporters the chance to take part in the event virtually.

From June 20-21, more than 2,000 people across the South West completed their own 5km challenge – with fundraisers walking, running, swimming, rowing and scooting to raise money for the cause.

The charity put on online warm-up sessions and held a virtual after party each day, providing as much of the full event experience as possible.

Supporters taking part in the Rainbow Run,Supporters taking part in the Rainbow Run,

Kiley Pearce, events fundraiser for CHSW, said: “We were so overwhelmed by the amount of people that took part in the Virtual Rainbow Run of their own accord and of course the incredible amount they have raised.

“The engagement from people on social media over the weekend was just fantastic and it was humbling to see so many people getting involved.

“It was obviously incredibly sad to make the decision to cancel our three Rainbow Runs, these events usually bring in around £150,000 for the charity each summer.

“We are however, delighted that so many people still supported us and of course did so in their rainbow colours which are all the more poignant since the start of this pandemic.”

Donna Stoner taking part in the 5km for CHSW.Donna Stoner taking part in the 5km for CHSW.

The Virtual Rainbow Run was sponsored by Ann’s Cottage and The Exeter, both companies showing sustained support for the children’s charity through these difficult times.

CHSW’s three children’s hospices including Charlton Farm in Wraxall have adapted their care for children and their families since the start of the coronavirus pandemic.

Care teams are currently only providing symptom management and end-of-life care in the hospice.

The care teams are now visiting more families at home as well as providing support virtually for children and their families who will continue to isolate for many more weeks.

It costs around £11million to run the three hospice sites each year and the charity relies almost entirely on voluntary contributions.

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