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Lancashire
Saturday, June 15, 2024

Supporters enjoy sun, sea and sand in Derian House charity walk

It was sunglasses down and sun cream on for supporters who took part in the Derian House Children’s Hospice annual Morecambe Bay walk from Arnside to Grange-over-Sands.

Donning their distinctive Derian green T-shirts, 120 people and 20 dogs walked the seven-miles across the bay to raise money for their local children’s hospice, last Saturday.

The determined walkers strode across sand and waded through water that was often up to their knees on the charity’s longest-running fundraiser – having being going for 28 years.

Together they raised an incredible £14,000 for the hospice that cares for over 400 children and their families each year.

One group took on the challenge in memory of their friend’s baby, Ariya, who passed away in February this year.

Ariya’s mum, Natasha Leigh-ann Duong (35) of Farington, Leyland, said: “I am so lucky and proud of my friends who took part in the walk to keep Ariya’s spirit alive.

“Ariya got to spend time with us in the Sunflower Room at Derian House after she passed away and the charity helped to create memories with hand and foot prints. We are still in contact and are supported by the hospice.

“I’m not surprised that my friends took part in their walk for Derian House, they would have been the best aunties to Ariya. She is loved by so many and this is just another way my amazing friends are showing it. I can’t thank them enough for all they have and still do for us as a family and for the money they have raised to support a place that supported us.”

Amazing

Gemma Seaton (35) of Chorley, walked alongside Team Ariya on the Morecambe Bay Walk.

She said: “We all came to Derian House to visit Ariya, Natasha and the family. We already had an idea that we were going to do something for the charity, but after seeing the services Derian provide, we wanted to give back as much as possible and this was the first event where we found it possible.

“We loved the walk! It was wonderful weather, and amazing to see everyone together for an amazing cause. Natasha and Ariya’s family came to meet us at the end too.”

Walkers signed up for the Morecambe Bay Walk for free, but were asked to raise a minimum of £50 for Derian House Children’s Hospice.

Incredible amount

Kerry Salmon, community fundraiser at Derian House, said: “Sunshine, stunning views, and lovely supporters truly make the Morecambe Bay Walk a special day.

“As always, thank you to Guide over Sands Trust for once again for leading the way. And thank you to everyone who took part, raising an incredible amount for the children and families at Derian House. It will cost £6 million to run services at Derian House in 2024, and yet we receive very little funding from the government. We rely heavily on the generosity of our supporters for raising 70p in every £1 we need to keep running.”

Derian House cares for more than 400 babies, children, young people and their families from across the North West.

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