WHAT a month! It was ‘Celebration September’ for CatZero as events and fund-raising activities to mark our tenth anniversary were a huge success.
Programme celebration events, our mega coast-to-coast sponsored cycle ride and two reunion evenings for past participants were all held within an extremely busy fortnight. The events also included what was perhaps the highlight – a visit by our Patron Sir Robin Knox-Johnston, whose presence on both sides of the Humber attracted significant media attention.
So, let’s take a look at some of the highlights:
Sir Robin’s visit: Sir Robin, who of course was the first person ever to sail alone around the globe, has been our Patron from the very start. With worldwide notoriety, he found time in his packed schedule to fly in from Portugal and travel up to the Humber. His whistle-stop tour included interviews with ITV Calendar, Radio Humberside, the Hull Daily Mail and the Grimsby Telegraph. He visited Grimsby Fishing Heritage Centre – enjoying a tour around the Ross Tiger fishing trawler, which is now a floating museum exhibit, before speaking in front of an audience of business, education and community leaders.
It was then across the water to Hull and its wonderful Trinity House for an early evening reception, again attended by leaders from commerce and industry. Both events also heard from CatZero, and past participants – who gave moving accounts of how the charity has changed their lives.
Our CatZero Cycle Challenge weekend: Fourteen intrepid adventurers set off on a tenth anniversary cycle, which was a true coast-to-coast, from Hornsea across to Southport. With a support crew offering valuable help, they encountered almost every weather condition over the three days and a total of £12,000 was raised.
Reunions Hull & Grimsby: As part of our celebrations we organised two buffet receptions for past participants and supporters. The first, in the beautiful Hull Minster saw people from some of our very first programmes come along. A wonderful chance to catch-up with old friends.
The second was in Grimsby at the Freeman Street Digital Hub, and once again we caught up with faces – old and new – to look back at how CatZero has helped change lives. Above is Lyndon Roberts, who is currently undertaking the Army’s recruitment process.
Celebration events: We had so many Celebration Events, with programmes coming to a close – of course, we always keep in touch and will be working with the participants in the weeks and months ahead. In Scunthorpe, we had the first of six new CLLD programmes finishing (participants are pictured below on their sail), in Grimsby there was the Veterans programme (pictured above are participants taking in a quick novel or two during a walk in the Lincolnshire Wolds), the Full Families summer programme for young people and Lone Parents. While in Hull CLLD Five came to a successful end.
All had achieved so much and are now looking forward to bolder and brighter futures. Well done to everyone.
Our Clipper adventurer: Yes, September 1st saw our very own Callum Leach, pictured above with Danny, set off from London on board Zhuhai as a crew member on the first leg of the round-the-world Clipper race. Supported by a bursary from the charitable foundation teamArchie, Callum is experiencing the sailing adventure of a lifetime on route to South America! More from Callum soon.
Reflecting on a September that has pushed our charity to the fore like never before, Director of Operations Dave Bertholini, pictured above with Sir Robin said: “I don’t think anyone’s feet have touched the ground, we have even managed to squeeze in some taster sails for supporters and of course the Fastnet Race, again for supporters whose money goes directly to the charity.
“The 10 years have been a whirlwind and we can only thank each and every supporter, participant, funder and team member for their invaluable input into CatZero – a charity that truly works in transforming the lives of people across both sides of the Humber bank.”