On 8th September, five “highly-trained wine drinkers and severely lapsed athletes” (by their own admission!) will take on the Marathon du Medoc in France. A 26.2-mile run with a feast of oysters, cheese, entrecôte and foie gras, all washed down with up to 23 glasses of wine!
The annual Marathon du Medoc, is a truly Gallic event. Participants must tackle the hallowed distance, but refreshments are the sort you’d expect at a lavish party hosted by Gerard Depardieu: enough wine to fill a swimming pool, towers of mussels, and even ice cream. It’s the south of France in September too, so expect it to be hot (the forecast for the weekend is for temperatures of up to 32C).Oh, and fancy dress is compulsory!
This summer, Quintessential Brands Group, makers of some of the world’s favourite English gins and Irish whiskies, will be embarking on a 225 mile ‘Spirit of Adventure’ bike ride over four days from the North to the South of England, raising money for Small Steps along the way.
Comprised of Quintessential Brands employees with varying degrees of cycling competency, the team are making it their mission to raise as much money as possible for Small Steps from the bike ride. They will be departing from England’s oldest continuous distillers, G&J Distillers in Warrington, on the morning of Friday 31st August, before arriving at the Quintessential Brands Head Office in central London on the afternoon of Monday 3rd September.
Huge congratulations to Fay, Dan and Madara for successfully completing the 2018 London Marathon despite the heat! This year’s London Marathon was officially the hottest on record, more than 40,000 runners took part amid temperatures of 24.1C!
Fay is nanny to Fintan and Cillian and for a number of years Fay attended sessions at Small Steps with Fintan. Having only taken up running quite recently, this was Fay’s first full marathon! You can read her wonderful story on her JustGiving page here.
Danielle, first heard about Small Steps as part of the Global Make Some Noise campaign on LBC radio! She is running in honour of her father who is an amputee and so wanted to find a charity with a personal connection. Dan has visited us at Small Steps with her daughter and you can read more about her amazing story on her fundraising page here.
And last but not least, Madara who is a friend of one our graduate Small Steps families, decided to take on the 26.2 mile challenge to raise funds for Small Steps on her fundraising page here.
It’s still not too late to donate, so if you are able to sponsor any of our inspirational runners we’d be hugely grateful. Thank you!
There was huge fun had at The Small Steps Bollywood Ball at Royal Mid-Surrey Golf Club on 19th May! Massive thanks to everyone who attended and helped us raise vital funds for Small Steps. Fabulous to have dancers from “Sapnay” perform some phenomenal Bollywood dance for us and Shelle Luscombe presenting and singing. Final total raised still to come in… so watch this space!
We’re very excited that a number of eminent blues musicians have agreed to come together to perform to raise funds for Small Steps! The “Small Steps Sunday Session” takes place on the afternoon of Sunday October 21st at the prestigious Half Moon in Putney. The amazing line up includes ‘The Lettuceheads’, ‘Tim Hain’, ‘Andy Roberts Blues’ and ‘Soul Patrol’. This event is likely to sell out FAST! So be sure to book your tickets now to avoid disappointment.
We had a fabulous time celebrating Children in Need week recently. We are so delighted that Children In Need are once again supporting Small Steps with a grant of £77,334 over 3 years. This funding is invaluable in enabling Small Steps to continue to support young disabled children and their families. The children, parents, carers and staff had great fun doing various Children in Need themed activities and dressing up in our Pudsey Ears to highlight BBC Children in Need and show our gratitude for their wonderful support!
We are holding a charity Quiz Night on Friday 13th October in East Sheen. It’s a great opportunity for everyone to meet up and have a bit of fun, whilst also raising some money for Small Steps! So if you are interested in joining us, either in pairs or getting a team together, do let us know asap. You’ll be up against the Small Steps staff team, who won last year…so will be aiming to retain their title!
We are so excited that Small Steps is one of Global’s Make Some Noise 2017 charities! Global’s Make Some Noise is a national charity linked to 8 of the UK’s most famous radio brands. So if you listen to Capital FM, Heart, LBC, Gold, Radio X, Classic FM, Smooth or Capital Xtra, you will probably already have heard about the Make Some Noise Appeal. Each radio station encourages listeners and their presenters to help fundraise for their charities in a whole host of different ways, from on-air competitions, through to celebrities zip wiring off very tall buildings!
We were delighted that Ruth, Sam and Hayley had the opportunity to talk on Nick Ferrari’s breakfast show on LBC on Global’s Make Some Noise day too! A big thank you to Bleu’s Mum Hayley who spoke to Nick about her experiences with Bleu at Small Steps.
Global’s Make Some Noise Day raised over £3,520,367 for 33 small charities across the UK! Thanks to everyone who supported the campaign!
We’re really grateful to the Live Free Chiropractic and Wellness Centre in Putney for supporting Small Steps at their upcoming Open Day!
If you’re in the area and would like to experience a wonderful class at a bargain price, please book now! All proceeds come to Small Steps!
On 15th July a group of 37 very brave Year 5 kids and their slightly terrified parents climbed to the top of Mount Snowdon via the most challenging Watkins Path. The ‘Marshgate Mountaineers’ took on this huge feat to raise money for both their school and for Small Steps. We’re really grateful to them for choosing Small Steps as their charity. It’s not too late to donate on their fundraising page to show your support! Thank you.
We’re very proud that the Small Steps Staff Team, together with some parents, families and friends completed the 20km London Winter Walk on Sunday 15th January and raised over £7,000! The weather was very wet and cold, but we braved the elements to complete the course in just over 4 hours.
Small Steps were delighted to be one of the chosen charities to benefit from The White Thistle Ball which was held at The Hammersmith Town Hall on December 15th. The annual ball is for young people 11-14 years of age and this year all profits from the event went to just 2 chosen children’s charities, of which Small Steps is one. This was the 5th consecutive year that the White Thistle Ball organisers have supported Small Steps and we are hugely grateful to them.
We’re so grateful and full of admiration for Charlotte, who did the Saharan Challenge in October to raise funds for Small Steps. Charlotte Trekked 2 tough Marathons over 2 days through some stunning Moroccan landscape. Charlotte has raised £1,521.75 to date, with more coming in. Thanks so much Charlotte!
So grateful to Linda (friend of one of our Small Steps Trustees), who has chosen to do the Great South Run in October and raise funds for Small Steps!
She explains why… “Guys I need your help. I am doing the great south run next month and I need your sponsorship. It is important, I was lucky I had 3 gorgeous healthy babies but not everyone does, I cant imagine what I would have done, how I would have coped, but a charity called Small Steps is there to help not just the babies but the Mums as well. They do such a brilliant job I couldn’t do what they do, Please sponsor me, I am running 10 Miles that’s a long long way so that’s gotta be worth something!!!!”
On 15 July, Amrop UK (formerly The Mulsanne Partnership) successfully completed the Welsh 3000’s 24hr challenge for Small Steps.
This was no walk in the park and involved climbing the 15 mountains above 3000 feet within the Snowdonia National park, and covering around 30 miles of mountain.
The Welsh 3000 is one of the toughest mountain challenges in the UK and requires fitness, determination and resilience and to achieve this feat each of them will be pushed both physically and mentally. We’re hugely grateful to the team for taking on such a difficult challenge and raising so much for Small Steps.
They set up a JustGiving page to collect sponsorship for their challenge: https://www.justgiving.com/fundraising/AmropUK. So please do sponsor them if you can, it’s not too late! Thank you for all your support!
On the 31st July William’s Dad Neil took part in the Prudential Ride London, a 100 mile cycle race following the Olympic 2012 route and has raised over £6,000 for Small Steps! We’re hugely grateful to Neil for choosing to raise funds for Small Steps. Neil explains why:
“I am cycling the event to raise funds for Small Steps, a charity very close to my heart. At just over 2 weeks old, our son William contracted a virus and subsequently suffered a stroke. This left him with a weakness on one side of his body known as Hemiplegia – a mild form of cerebral palsy. Weekly sessions at Small Steps have played a major part in his on-going rehabilitation as well as giving huge emotional support to us as a family. They receive no statutory funding and are solely dependent on charitable grants, fundraising and donations, so no matter what the amount, every little bit will make a big difference! Their work is truly inspirational and I would be extremely grateful for your support for this very worthy cause. Please dig deep and help Small Steps continue their amazing work enhancing the lives of disabled children and their families.“
Over the last few years the RSA UK Underwriting team have supported Small Steps by raising money via 10K runs & swimming challenges, hosting charity quiz nights and raffles and helping us to move to our new premises. Last year the team took on a quadrathlon where they took it in turns to swim 1K, run 5k and cycle 10k. On top of that they walked 11 miles from their offices in central London to Small Steps in Roehampton. We are delighted that the team decided to do the challenge again on 5th June this year! Thanks so much to all the team for all your efforts and raising such valuable funds for Small Steps.
We are delighted that Small Steps is taking part in the Sainsbury’s Active Kids scheme again this year. You can collect vouchers when you shop in Sainsbury’s stores, petrol stations or for groceries online, then donate them to Small Steps and we can exchange them for lots of lovely new equipment for our children! Please ask friends and family to donate their vouchers too.
Sainsbury’s Active Kids scheme is a great initiative from which Small Steps has benefitted hugely over the past few years. Ellie Simmonds has signed up again to be an Active Kids ambassador and as a double gold medal-winner at the London 2012 Paralympic Games and the youngest person ever to receive an MBE, Ellie’s a truly inspirational role model. Ellie says, “I have been part of Active Kids for more than five years and joined a year after competing at the Beijing Paralympic Games. Not only have I have benefited first-hand from their support, but I’ve also seen just how enthusiastic kids are about sport. It’s so important that children learn to lead healthier lives from as early on as possible. And if I can help them achieve that, then it’s another gold for me!”
Please pop your vouchers in the post to us at Small Steps or bring them with you when you visit. Many thanks.
It was a great atmosphere on 12th December for the Small Steps Christmas Party. We had a funpacked morning with a special visit from Father Christmas who had a gift for each child and their siblings. Then we had a wonderful singalong with Helen and Vanessa from ‘Singing Hands’ who sang and signed their way through a repertoire of Christmas songs. Thank you to everyone who came along and especially to Father Christmas for finding time in his busy schedule to be with us! We’re very grateful to the Cheyne Charity who kindly funded the party for us.
A huge thank you once again to Paul Mott, who completed the Ultra-Trail du Mont-Blanc recently to raise money for Small Steps.
The Ultra-Trail du Mont-Blanc (also referred to as UTMB) is a single-stage mountain ultramarathon. It takes place once a year in the Alps, across France, Italy and Switzerland. The distance is approximately 166 km, with a total elevation gain of around 9,600 m. It is widely regarded as one of the most difficult foot races in Europe. It’s certainly one of the largest with over two thousand starters. The combined participation in all of the events is approaching 10 thousand runners.
Paul’s son Sam used to come to Small Steps and over the year’s Paul and his Sandblasters team, have raised tens of thousands of pounds for the charity. Paul is raising money on his Sandblasters JustGiving page. Please donate whatever you can. Thank you.
We’re really grateful to Kai and his Mum Lesley, who completed the 190 mile Coast to Coast walk from St Bees to Robin Hoods Bay to raise money for Small Steps. The Coast to Coast Walk is a mostly unsignposted long-distance footpath in Northern England. Devised by Alfred Wainwright, it passes through three contrasting national parks: the Lake District National Park, the Yorkshire Dales National Park, and the North York Moors National Park.
Wainwright recommends that walkers dip their booted feet in the Irish Sea at St Bees and, at the end of the walk, in the North Sea at Robin Hood’s Bay!
On 6th April, Matt White ran the Brighton Marathon raising £740 for Small Steps! The Brighton Marathon is a road race run over the distance of 26 miles, taking in some of the sights of central Brighton before heading East towards Rottingdean, then west out to and around Hove, and finally returning on the seafront and finishing on Madeira Drive, close to Brighton Pier.
Matt explains why he’s raising funds for Small Steps…”I am raising donations for Small Steps by running the Brighton Marathon on 6 April. Two very close friends of mine use the specialist help provided by Small Steps for their son. Small Steps was founded to provide help and support to parents with physically disabled children. Small Steps is a free service and as a registered charity they do not receive any statutory funding. Small Steps is solely dependent on grants, donations and fundraising in order to operate. Your donation would help Small Steps continue to make a difference for so many disabled children and their parents. Thank you for your support.”
A HUGE Small Steps cheer and thank you to Sue and Geoff (Grandparents to Ellis) who ran a Small Steps Charity Night at the Bishopsford Road Social Club in Morden on Saturday 16th November and raised a massive £2335 for Small Steps!!! Sue and Geoff run the Social Club and put on a fantastic night of entertainment including music from Freddie Mercury and Elvis! We’re so grateful to them and everyone who attended the night for raising such valuable funds for Small Steps.
Steve Partridge one of our ‘Sandblasters’ just got back from the Kalahari Augrabies Extreme Marathon which is run over seven days, covering an approximate distance of 250 km (155 mi)! The event takes place in the Kalahari Desert in the proximity of the Augrabies Falls on the Orange River. The route traverses the Augrabies Falls National Park, private game parks and many private farmlands. This contrasting environment with average day temperatures reaching in excess of 40 °C and dropping to below 5 °C at night presents a daunting challenge to the extreme athlete and determined adventurer alike. Steve said the race was “…very gruelling but still successful. My feet got chewed up on the race which was a lot harder than the Marathon Des Sables, but I did lead the event for 60 Kilometers”. A huge Small Steps thank you to Steve for his continuing support of Small Steps. Steve and the other ‘Sandblasters’ are collecting donations on their JustGiving page.
A big thank you to Jim Buckle who ran the Kingston 16 mile Breakfast Run on 13th October 2013 and raised over £3,150 for Small Steps! Jim’s close friends have attended Small Steps with their daughter who has Rett Syndrome. This is her mother’s description of what Small Steps has done for them:
“My four year old daughter has Rett Syndrome. It has taken so much from her. Small Steps has taught me and her to concentrate on and to celebrate the things that she can do as we come to terms with what she cannot do. Small Steps helps us to explore what she can do in fun and interesting ways; to think outside of the box and to use everyday objects with her to explore and build her capabilities.
The team are caring, always there to listen, always want to help and give advice. In such a difficult situation we look forward to our Wednesday afternoons at Small Steps. Small Steps has been an anchor and a guide for us since before her diagnosis.
There have been dark times and moments when thinking about the future had been difficult but what Small Steps has done from the beginning has helped me to be positive and, from seeing my daughter taking part in the activities where she has responded well, has taught me that she can still have fun, laugh, giggle, smile and enjoy lots of praise and encouragement just like any other child.
My daughter has gradually lost the use of her hands but the approach and variety of games and activities I have learnt through Small Steps has given her the confidence to really try and use them in another way. Something as simple as pushing some soft balls through a ladder; to see her pride when she can do it and her joy as she watches it fall into a “goal” is so rewarding for her and myself. The claps and the praise from the other mums and Carers build her self esteem and for a moment make her feel like the most special person in the world. At Small Steps, she really is one of the most special people in the world…”
Please sponsor Jim on his JustGiving Page and help more families access Small Steps.
We are hugely grateful to Jason Glover who ran the Great South Run on Sunday 27th October and raised over £1,100 for Small Steps! Jason ran the fast and flat 10 mile route which takes in the iconic sites of the Portsmouth Historic Dockyard including Portsmouth Cathedral, Spinnaker Tower and the HMS Victory- which has played host to the Band of HM Royal Marines, who often perform for passing runners! The final flat stretch along the sea front has given thousands of people the opportunity to get a personal best time for more than twenty years. Jason works for Sidley Austin, a company who are long time sponsors of Small Steps and so has personally chosen to raise money for us. Thanks so much!
On the 11th May Chris, Claire, Zoe and Rob walked 40 miles in a day to celebrate their ‘BIG FOUR O’ and raised over £800 for Small Steps!! Claire is Godmother to Sofia, who attends Small Steps each week, and so Claire and Chris kindly decided to make this a sponsored walk for Small Steps. They walked through all kinds of weather but finished the 40 miles together in 13 and a half hours. A massive thanks to you all.
Chris, Claire, Zoe and Rob the night before the big day!
GamesAid are organising the 6th Annual Entertainment Industry Charity Golf & Spa Day which takes place on Thursday 11th July 2013 at The Grove in Watford, the venue of Tiger Woods’ victory in the American Express Championship in 2006.
Last year’s event was a raging success, where the efforts of many of the Entertainment Industry key companies helped GamesAid raise the largest amount of money ever from one single event for children’s charities and worthy causes, one of which was Small Steps!!
If you or anyone you know, works in the Entertainment Industry and would like to experience a great day out with Industry friends there are still a limited number of tickets available at the Golf & Spa Day website.
Charlie’s sister, Eloise attends sessions at Small Steps on a weekly basis and on 25th May he and mum Sarah and his grandparents are climbing Snowdon to raise money for two charities very close to their hearts – Small Steps and also SWAN UK.
Sarah said, “Many of you will know I have a gorgeous, happy little girl called Eloise who is 3 years old. She has severe developmental delay, learning difficulties, a respiratory condition and she is unable to walk or communicate. Despite numerous tests the professionals are still unable to diagnose her although they believe the cause to be genetic.
As I’m sure many of you can imagine – this feels very isolating and life has been very difficult until we discovered SWAN UK, a project specifically set up to support families of children with undiagnosed genetic conditions. The Facebook support group is amazing and its so nice to know there is a group who know what it is like to travel a different path to the rest of the world.
The other charity we have decided to support is Small Steps, based in Roehampton where Eloise goes for therapy fortnightly. The sessions are based on the principles of Conductive Education which is about active learning, life skills broken down into small achievable steps based on the strong belief that children with physical disabilities can learn new or different ways of approaching and dealing with everyday tasks through a greater knowledge of their own abilities. Thank you so much for your support, it is greatly appreciated.”
Sarah and Louise are running the BUPA London 10k on 27th May to raise money for Small Steps! The Race starts (and finishes) in The Mall and follows a clockwise route around the City of Westminster and the City of London. Many thanks and best of luck to Sarah and Louise! To show your support please sponsor them on their JustGiving page. Thank you!
On the 11th May 2013 Jane (Harvey’s Grandma) and 8 other Harley Riders will be setting out on an Iron Butt ride to the Nuremburg Ring in Germany to raise money for their respective charities. This is a 1000 mile bike ride that must be completed within a 24 hour time period.
An Iron Butt ride tests endurance, persistence and determination. Jane said “Although it will be a challenge this is something I am looking forward to especially as its for such a great cause. Lets hope for some nice, dry, warm weather!”
Please sponsor Jane on her JustGiving page and show your support for her epic adventure! Many thanks.
Sam’s Dad, James, and Sam’s Auntie Maddy are running the Richmond 13.1 Half Marathon on 31st March to raise money for Small Steps. This will be the furthest either of them have run (if they make it!). But we’re sure they will!!! Please show your support for James and Maddy by sponsoring them on their Virgin Money Giving page. Thank you.
We are delighted to announce that on 13th December 2012, Anita Coppola our Head of Service, received an MBE from The Prince of Wales, for ‘Services to Special Education’ specifically for her work with Small Steps. Many congratulations to Anita for this immensely well deserved award!
Anita and Heather were delighted to attend the GamesAid “Games on Song” concert on 19th December. It was a fantastic evening of Christmas songs performed by a choir made up entirely of people from the games industry. The event raised an amazing £12,000 for the GamesAid charities and Small Steps is delighted to have been one of the GamesAid chosen charities this year.
Many congratulations and a big thank you to Yari Fontebasso who recently completed the Venice marathon in aid of Small Steps!
This was Yari’s first marathon and he braved the cold, rain, strong winds and high waters in Venice and he finished 34th out of 5900 runners (chip time) in a total time of 2 hours 49 minutes. Very impressive!!!
Here’s Yari with his thank you certificate from Small Steps…
They did it!!! The guys and gals at Mulsanne ran, swam and cycled their hearts out in an attempt to raise £10k for Small Steps and completed their ‘virtual Triathlon’.
To achieve this amazing feat, each employee has been pushed well beyond their ordinary fitness levels; average distances undertaken were 5km swim, 150km cycle or 21km run. Please show your support admiration for the Mulsanne employees and help them reach their £10,000 target by sponsoring them anything you can on their JustGiving page. Thank you!
A group of lovely people from REN Skincare (colleagues of Archie’s Mum, Hen) ran the British 10k on the 8th July. They are hoping to raise a massive £10,000 for Small Steps from a number of fundraising events, so please show your support and make a donation their JustGiving page. Thank you!
For the last five years Paul Mott (who’s son Sam used to attend Small Steps) and his fellow Sandblasters team mates, have been taking part in a series of desert ultramarathons to raise money Small Steps. So far with the continued generosity of their supporters, they have raised an incredible £403,000, making a huge difference to the service that the Small Steps team are able to offer. On July 9th Paul will commence the Al Andalus Ultra Trail in Andalucía, Spain – 230km and 7,200 meters of ascent/descent over 5 days, in extreme heat – no walk in the park! As always any donations to the Sandblasters JustGiving page are gratefully received and make all the difference.
Between the 27th May and 1st June Nick Maddox (Alice’s Uncle) is walking The South Downs Way to raise money for Small Steps!
He will trek the length of The South Downs Way, a 100 mile trail from Winchester to Eastbourne through the South Downs National Park. He’s set himself the challenge of walking the trail in five days and will be camping along the route so will be carrying all the kit he needs. All of us at Small Steps wish Nick the best of luck.. we’ll be thinking of you all the way! You can sponsor Nick at http://www.justgiving.com/NickMaddox76
Three wonderful people, Caroline, Paul and Robert from RSA Insurance Group (Liability Underwriting team based in London) have agreed to attempt to swim 1,000 metres at London Fields lido on Friday 1 June 2012. They have been training hard and are looking forward to the challenge but with your support we are sure it will spur them on. Take a look at their Just Giving Page.
We had an amazing day at Richmond May Fair on Saturday 12th May raising over £900 for Small Steps. The sun was shining and we have never been busier, cakes were flying off the tables and we’d completely sold out of lemonade by early afternoon! Thank you to all the parents and friends who made cakes, came and helped sell on the stall and everybody who came to visit us on the day. There was a great atmosphere all day… can’t wait for next year!
Small Steps will be exhibiting at the Responsible Business Exhibition 2012, being held at the Business Design Centre, London on 14 -15 March.
Responsible Business 2012 is a two-day, not-for-profit event developed through a strategic partnership between UBM and Business in the Community (BITC) consisting of the Responsible Business Exhibition and the BITC Responsible Business Convention.
“74% of the British public think that social and environmental reputation is important when buying a product or service.” psosMORI, September 2009.
If you are interested in attending, please use the link below.
Small Steps were lukcy enough to be this year’s charity for the South London and Surrey Land Rover Club’s London to Brighton Run! The event raised over £500 and still counting! Many thanks to everyone at SLSLRC for all their hard work.