Solicitors at Hay & Kilner Law Firm have reached new heights to raise a four-figure sum for an independent North East suicide prevention and education charity.
Fourteen members of the team at the Newcastle-headquartered practice have been taking part in an Everest challenge this month, which saw each of them covering 70km, the equivalent of the distance from Lukla in the foothills of the Himalaya up to base camp on the world’s highest mountain.
All 14 completed their allotted distance within the two weeks of the challenge, with Elaine Knox and Tom Bridge covering well over 100km each.
And thanks to generous donations from clients, colleagues, contacts and friends, more than £1,800 has so far been raised through the challenge for Hay & Kilner’s dedicated charity this year, the If U Care Share Foundation, which promotes emotional well-being in young people and supports families affected by suicide right across the region.
Based in Chester-le-Street, the Foundation was set up by Shirley Smith and her husband Dean following the death of their 19-year-old son Daniel, and focuses on prevention, intervention and support of those bereaved by suicide.
Lucy Gray, partner at Hay & Kilner Law Firm and one of the team leaders, says: “We wanted to find a team-based challenge that kept people engaged for an extended period while also enabling us to get out in the fresh air – and while the weather wasn’t always great, at least we didn’t have to put up with any proper Everest blizzards!
“Most of the team went out around our neighbourhoods before and after work, but a few managed to get up into the hills at weekends and added a bit of actual climbing to their walks.
“The work done by the If U Care Share Foundation is very important at the best of times, but it has seen a huge increase in demand for its services this year while also being unable to carry out most of its usual fundraising activities.
“We’re very grateful to everyone who’s sponsored our efforts and very pleased to be able to contribute such a great sum to a charity that’s never been more needed than it is right now.”
Donations to the Hay & Kilner Everest Challenge can still be made by visiting https://www.totalgiving.co.uk/mypage/everestclimb_for_ifucareshare