North Tyneside takes on paw-some challenge for disability charity

23 May 2017

Several dog walkers and their dogs taking part in the #100for100 dog walkTynemouth Longsands beach was paw-sitively overrun with dogs on Sunday 21 May, when a charity challenge to walk 100 dogs took over the sands.

The challenge took place on Tynemouth Longsands North beach, where attendees walked the half mile from Cullercoats and back again. Despite wet and windy conditions, over 100 owners and their dogs showed up.

The area’s dog lovers were coming together to raise money for disabled people across the region, in tribute to war hero and global humanitarian Leonard Cheshire, whose charity provides care services in the area.

This fundraising event was part of the charity’s ‘100 for 100’ challenge, as this year would have been Leonard Cheshire’s 100th birthday. The charity is calling on people to harness their creativity to do anything involving the number 100.

Dog lover Wendy McGauley, of North Tyneside, works for Leonard Cheshire and was inspired to organise the event on the beach where she walks her own dog, red fox labrador Mac on.

She said:

‘I was delighted to see so many four legged supporters join us on a chilly Sunday morning.

‘My dog Mac had the time of his life, and it was fantastic to see everyone come together for a good cause.

‘I would like to thank everyone who came along, and the dedicated volunteers who helped to make the day a success.’

Wendy was joined by residents of Leonard Cheshire supported living unit Bradbury Court, Marske Hall care home, and the Minories day service and Bradbury Wing care home.

Tom Pugh in the wheelchair-adapted sand buggy built  by his dad PhilOne attendee, Tom Pugh, 29, a resident of Bradbury Court, had a particularly memorable time.

Tom has cerebral palsy and is quadriplegic, so uses a wheelchair for mobility. Most wheelchairs are not equipped for difficult terrain, but Tom was determined not to miss out on the fun, and came along with a wheelchair-adapted sand buggy, built for him by his dad Phil.

He said:

‘It was great being able to take part. I really enjoyed seeing all the dogs and riding my sand buggy along the beach.’

Over £500 was raised on the day by volunteers selling Leonard Cheshire doggy-bandanas and homemade dog biscuits.

All funds raised will go to Leonard Cheshire Disability, to support the charity’s work in the region, including funding for people to access activities, innovative equipment and therapies which would not be supplied by social care.

If you’d like to donate visit Wendy's JustGiving page.

Group Captain Leonard Cheshire would have been 100 years old in September this year, but sadly passed away in 1992 after almost half a century of humanitarian work supporting disabled people around the world.

Continuing his legacy, the charity currently runs care services globally, and also has specific projects to widen education and employment opportunities for disabled people.

Those taking on Leonard Cheshire’s 100 for100 challenge are sharing it on social media using the hashtag #100for100, tagging friends to join the fun with their own #100for100 challenge.

The charity is asking people to fundraise by asking friends and family to text CHALLENGE to 70313 to donate £3 to support their #100for100 efforts!

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