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February Newsletter

Just a quick newsletter to inform everyone what we are up to.

We are approaching our 4 months anniversary (from registration) and a lot has happened!

Website

The website is up and running (you’ll have noticed this already if you are reading this on the website!). Thanks to Dave for the many, many hours that have gone into this. Thanks also for all the assistance from Bruce Lamden and David Newman. All the courses, events etc. are now there with links to the accommodation. Please share the website with anyone who may be interested. You can also share using the social media links on the left of each page.

Facebook

We are active on facebook too. The public page is  here.

We also have a closed facebook group for VI participants and guides. Here you can keep in touch with each other, share photos, arrange trips etc. This is only visible to members, if you wish to join please email Jill and let her know. She will need to know the email address you use for facebook.

Courses

We have 11 courses on the schedule. Most of the places are filled. We have kept a few places for newcomers and are pleased to be welcoming some new faces this year. If anyone knows of any new VI’s who might like to join us please get in touch ASAP before we fill the last few places.

The booking process has been very smooth. Thanks for everyone’s cooperation with this, much appreciated.

Guides

We still have some big gaps in some of the guide lists, especially for cycling and triathlon but a recruitment drive is underway. We are also hoping to recruit volunteers to other roles such as guide dog sitting and helping with cooking. If you know someone who might want to volunteer with us please ask them to get in touch as we always like to recruit by personal recommendation.

We are also looking for some local guides for day activities and volunteers to help with things like maintaining the tandems, fitting out the store and running our ebay for charity operation.

Equipment

Bendrigg have transferred, to us, much of the equipment which we acquired as the Spirit of Adventure. So we have canoes and a trailer, 6 tandems and various other associated equipment. 3 other tandems are on the way. We have one coming from the Gateway Wheelers on long term loan. Steve Bateman has very kindly organised for an extra small tandem to be built especially for those lady pilots who are too small for the current bikes. Sport England are funding another small tandem which will be a bit more racy than our current small bike.

We still need to acquire some caving and climbing kit but funding bids are in so fingers are crossed! Otherwise there will be naked caving and un-roped climbing! (Only joking -we can borrow kit in the short term).

We have a rented store a few miles from Kendal which we still need to fit out with shelves and racks etc. We are still looking for a permanent home for the canoe trailer and the box trailer which we are hoping to get for moving bikes etc around.

Grant Funding

We have been very busy writing funding bids to support our courses and although not all are confirmed or declined yet we are very encouraged, and can confirm that all the courses will go ahead (subject to filling the remaining guide places).

The Nineveh Trust have just confirmed that they will fund an administrator position in the office one day a week for at least a year. This news has been greeted with much rejoicing, especially from Jill! We just need to find the right person now.

We have also received support from Ford Britain, Galaxy, The Jeremy Willson Charitable Trust, Sport England, The Yorkshire Building Society, The Furness Building Society, The Souter Charitable Trust, The Alpkit Foundation, The Grange and District Lions, Lancaster and Morecambe Lions and Moto in the Community.

Fundraising and Donations

Masuma Ali and her “Look who’s Walking” Team raised just over £1000 last year for Spirit of Adventure by walking the 50km Peak District Challenge in 12 hours, an amazing achievement. Bendrigg has agreed that this money can be used towards accommodation for our June climbing course which is based at their Acorn House accommodation.

Martin Brumpton is leading the charge with the London to Brighton sponsorship having already raised £250.

After a false start with My Donate, who announced the closure of their scheme just as we had got set up, we are now able to receive donations via Virgin Money Giving.We chose this organisation as the cut they take is modest (2%) in comparison to others like Just Giving. There is also a facility for our supporters to set up their own page with Virgin Money which is ideal for those doing an event with / for us like London to Brighton. More details on our donate page.