Hi Sunshine News readers,
We hope everybody is well and that all who took part in this year’s Great North Run have recovered! And what a weekend it was! From sweltering heat first thing to torrential rain and calf-high floods in the afternoon, this year’s race presented perhaps more challenges than usual, and we are so grateful to each and every runner who chose to race for The Sunshine Fund.
Every penny raised in this year’s campaign is going to make a huge difference to local babies, children and young adults living with disabilities, additional needs and terminal illnesses, as we’ll be able to fund many of the life-changing pieces of equipment that are currently on our waiting list.
These items range from indoor and outdoor sensory toys to powered wheelchairs, trikes and scooters to adapted seating, iPads and other communication devices to specialist buggies, or eye gaze technology to mobility accessories, just to name a few.
Thanks to all of our 2023 GNR runners, we will be able to tick a good number of these items off our list, so thank you to all who ran for Team Sunshine this year! It’s safe to say they did it in style, too; from human sunflowers to inflatable dinosaurs, our runners made sure they caught people’s eyes and we’re so proud they were representing us!
And we can’t talk about the Great North Run without shining a light on our Team Mini Sunshine who raced for us on the Saturday at the Junior & Mini event! This was another unseasonably hot day but nonetheless, our team still took on the quayside in full force and absolutely smashed their races!
As well as representing us in their waves, they have also been fundraising for us and we’re so proud of how much they’ve raised, so they can help improve the lives of other kids in the region, living with complex needs.
This year wouldn’t be the success it has been without the generosity and support of our wonderful sponsors, True Potential, who have sponsored our 2023 GNR campaign for the 5th year running!
Our Charity Director, Siobhan Sargeant, says: “We are very lucky that as a small charity we have so many wonderful corporate partners, however it’s rare that we get to work with one who shares our ethos of a more inclusive society with opportunities for all as True Potential and that’s why we’ve been so successful working on the Great North Run campaign together for the last 5 years.
"The team at True Potential go above and beyond for us every year, not just in fundraising and donations but through volunteering, inviting our beneficiaries to their events and welcoming us on site, raising awareness and really taking the time to get to know the charity and invest in our charitable mission, and that means the world to us.
"True Potential and The Harrison Foundation, give us the platform to speak about the barriers young people with disabilities face and the challenges local families raising children with life limiting illnesses experience every day, as well as the support to ensure these families get the help they need in terms of equipment and services and we couldn’t be more grateful to work with them all.”
We were very kindly invited to the True Potential office this week for a post-run celebration. Here, we had the opportunity to thank our runners, hand out certificates and talk more about the charity and how far donations will go.
We were greeted with our own sunshine themed display, and we also took along two of our Sunshine Children, Freya and Heath. Since presenting to 500 of their staff the other week, Freya is well-known at True Potential and was given the VIP treatment – the yellow sweets certainly went down a treat!
When talking about this year’s campaign, Daniel Harrison (Chief Executive at True Potential) said, “This is our fifth year working together with The Chronicle Sunshine Fund as their Great North Run official sponsor and it’s always a highlight of the year for us.
We really love to get behind it in the build up with our team training to run for Team Sunshine. Then of course across the weekend itself there is such a fabulous atmosphere and a real buzz that we love to be part of.
"True Potential and The Chronicle Sunshine Fund share the same values about giving a hand up, creating opportunities and helping people overcome challenges they may face to reach their own full potential. The Chronicle Sunshine Fund does such important work supporting patients and their families in the region who need it most and that’s why this is an important partnership for us.”
Corporate support is so important for small charities like ours, and we were so grateful to hear about other ways True Potential will be supporting us and fundraising for us in the next month, and we’ve already started conversations about next year!
If you would like to find out more about how your organisation could support The Sunshine Fund, please visit https://www.thesunshinefund.org/corporate. If you’d like to donate to our Great North Run campaign, there’s still time! Please visit https://www.justgiving.com/campaign/teamsunshinegnr2023.
Thanks for reading!