Cumbrian Challenge, Covid-19 and keeping you safe -Written by James Davis, WWTW Events Manager
The past 18 months have been some of the toughest that we have gone through; individually, as a nation, and across the world. As a charity, we have seen first-hand how much the pandemic has changed the way we live.
Words and phrases we had not used before like ‘social distancing’ and ‘furlough’ became part of our everyday vocabulary. We needed to adapt quickly to this new landscape, which affected all areas of our operation and particularly our event fundraising.
In-person events suddenly disappeared from the charity landscape, and WWTW was no exception, with multiple events cancelled or postponed. Perhaps the most visible example in Walking With The Wounded was our widely known and well-loved Cumbrian Challenge event. Our participants, sponsors, and a trusty band of Volunteers stoically bore with us as the event was postponed from its original date in 2020, eventually ending up on September 11th, 2021. Fundraising and training were paused as we waited to see what would happen next.
Like the rest of the charity sector, and indeed the rest of the country, we have watched as, slowly, events are beginning to return to pre-Covid norms. We have seen events like the London Half Marathon take place, sports stadiums start to fill up and restrictions are being eased as the vaccine rollout continues and we feel more comfortable with meeting up with family, friends, and colleagues. We have learnt the lessons from these events, and we are now confident that we can run the Cumbrian Challenge in a Covid-19 secure manner, ensuring that every participant goes home safely.
We have designed procedures this year to keep everyone safe. Therefore, the event will feel different from how it has in the past. Everyone will be asked to take a Covid-19 lateral flow test before they attend the event and demonstrate a negative test on arrival. Everyone will wear face coverings when in any indoor space, social distancing will be maintained in indoor settings and teams will remain in Covid-19 bubbles throughout the weekend.
We have a ‘new normal’ as a country and this event is no different, but the core purpose remains the same – to raise £2,000 per team to help ensure we are able to offer support when and where it’s needed to our Veterans. We have fantastic teams who can’t wait to put their best foot forward together to make a difference. We have sponsors who support us putting on the event. And, we have a group of volunteers who help us manage the event on the day. Together they make the Cumbrian Challenge what is it. We are delighted therefore that we are now able to bring the challenge back with our Covid protocols in place. We look forward to bringing people back together to see how their small (and not so small) steps in the lakes can make a big difference.
There is still time to join us in the Lake District next month, sign-up here: www.cumbrianchallenge.org