A huge thank you to everyone who took part in or supported our Step Up for Refugees Challenge summer fundraiser this August – you have helped raise more than £2,000 to help the work of Action Foundation!

Our ‘Super Steppers’ staff team had a lot of fun and enjoyed the healthy competition of the step challenge. Collectively they took more than 2.6 million steps last month – the equivalent of about 870 miles. People shunned the lift in our CastleGate building in favour of the stairs and some staff started walking to work rather than taking the bus or Metro.

Several ‘Super Steppers’ also took on a Zip Wire Challenge as part of their fundraising efforts. Head of Client Services, Emily Malcolm; Administrator, Phoebe Pham and Communications and Events Officer, Pauline Holt, joined volunteers from our InterAction Drop-in last Friday in the daredevil flight from the Tyne Bridge to Newcastle Quayside.

Emily overcame her fear of heights to take part. She said: “It was scary stepping onto the edge of the bridge, but once I was in the air, it was really exhilarating! Thank you to everyone who sponsored me so generously.”

Meanwhile, former RAF pilot, James Fairman, went above and beyond with his challenge – stepping an average of 20,000 steps a day, that’s an impressive 290 miles during the month. He also did a fantastic job raising awareness about refugee issues by sharing regular video blogs from his walks around Newcastle, along Hadrian’s Wall and by the River Tyne. You can read the interview he gave to the Evening Chronicle here.

BBC Look North producer, Adrian Pitches, averaged between eight and nine kilometres per day and said he’d really recommend the 10,000 steps a day challenge for anyone looking to improve their fitness. He said it was good to help Action Foundation, but it also benefited the environment. “I left my car at home, took the Metro and did the 15-minute walk to – and from – the office every day. If I did a 40-minute walk at lunchtime as well, I could hit my 10,000 steps target by teatime. Otherwise I was out again in the evening, often in the dark!”

Abi Walker, Business Development Manager at Action Foundation, said:

“The Step Up for Refugees Challenge has been a great way to bond as a team and raise money for a great cause. Getting out and about has definitely boosted my physical and mental health. Action Foundation is an amazing charity that needs our support now more than ever and I’m so glad this challenge was able to bring in over £2,000 in donations!”

Thank you SO MUCH to everyone who took part in the Step Up for Refugees Challenge – and everyone who sponsored our walkers. In what Action for Happiness dubbed ‘Altruistic August’, you really did make a difference to other people’s lives!

The Super Steppers fundraising page remains open – you can access it here for last minute donations.

Pictured above: Some of the Zip Wire team, including Emily Malcolm (2nd from left); then from left below – James Fairman, Pauline Holt, Adrian Pitches, Joanne Reidy