A Coleg Llandrillo learning support assistant who cares for students with learning difficulties, is in the middle of a major fundraising drive to raise thousands of pounds, which will culminate in a 10-day trek through the wilds of Vietnam!
Gwen Chadwick, along with friends Nicola Hau and Myra Illingworth, have signed up for 'Trek Vietnam for Marie Curie Cancer Care 2019' which will take place from 24 October - 2 November, but will need to raise over £10,000 between them before their Asian adventure.
Nicola Hau, who is Gwen's neighbour, has been a volunteer for Marie Curie for five years. Her and Gwen were chatting about fundraising possibilities and eventually decided to take on the trek. The local Marie Curie Colwyn and Llandudno fundraising group has raised over £100,000 for the charity to date.
The intrepid trio will trek through the beautiful valleys and paddy fields of northern Vietnam to the breath-taking mountains of the Hòa Bình Province. As the Marie Curie campaign brief says:
Take in breath-taking lake, valley and mountains views, and pass though forests and jungles. Every step you take along the trail will make sure people with a terminal illness, and their loved ones, get the most from the time they have left.
The minimum fundraising amount of £3,500 per person will be used by the charity to offer care and support through terminal illness.
Gwen, Nicola and Myra raised £350 at a coffee morning event this week at the college's Orme View Restaurant at the Rhos-on-Sea campus, which also included a raffle and cake sale. They have also been collecting outside various supermarkets with charity tins.
Upcoming fundraising events include a Christmas Raffle (1,000 tickets sold so far!) and Musical Evening at the Bluebell Pub in Conwy in December, tea parties at Penrhyn Hall and Llandudno Pier, a BBQ Night at Community Club in Llandudno Junction and a family fun day next summer.
Gwen Chadwick said:
I have always been keen on fundraising: I have done the Moonwalk in London three times, which is the length of a marathon. We are all looking forward to our Vietnam trek; it will take us out of our comfort zone and will be a great adventure as well. We will be starting our fitness training in the new year.
Nicola Hau added:
I find volunteering very rewarding, especially when we receive tremendous feedback from families who have accessed the services.
Every Vietnam trekker's fundraising will make a huge difference: £180 pays for someone with a terminal illness to attend the day therapy unit at the hospice; £400 pays for someone to stay in a Marie Curie Hospice for 24 hours, so that they can receive the hands-on care they need in their final days, and £1,250 pays for a portable oxygen system that will relieve distressing symptoms, so a person doesn't have to be confined to bed.