Hatfield gym teams up with council for virtual relay event in aid of domestic abuse charity

PUBLISHED: 14:27 18 May 2020 | UPDATED: 14:27 18 May 2020

Participants from Energie Fitness Gym's sister club in Milton Keynes who raised over £14,000 for their local charity hospice in their virtual relay. Picture: Supplied

Participants from Energie Fitness Gym's sister club in Milton Keynes who raised over £14,000 for their local charity hospice in their virtual relay. Picture: Supplied


Welwyn Hatfield Borough Council and local gym, Energie Fitness, are inviting everyone to take part in a challenge to raise money for a domestic abuse charity.

You don’t have to be a good runner to sign up for a 48-hour online interactive relay event, which will increase awareness and raise funds for the Herts Domestic Abuse Helpline starting on May 29.

All you need to do is to run for at least 20 minutes, it can be in your garden, on your daily exercise outside, in your garage, or up and down your stairs.

Herts Domestic Abuse Helpline is collaborating with the council and the Hatfield-based gym to create an interactive and fun fundraising event that anyone can join in, no matter where you are, whether in lockdown or full isolation.

Recent statistics show that during the COVID-19 crisis domestic abuse is on the rise, as families are kept locked up for long periods of time together, unable to enjoy usual freedoms.

The event aims to provide crucial funds for the charity at a time when other revenue streams are not possible.

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“Like many charities, our opportunity to fundraise has been badly affected and we have found demand for our services has increased significantly,” said Chris Roach of HDAH. “We are having to double up the number of volunteers taking calls at peak times to help ensure that people can get through to us when they need to.”

The Herts Domestic Abuse Helpline (HDAH) is a charity that exists to provide a confidential and anonymous freephone service for anyone affected by domestic abuse. It has a team of well-trained volunteers who support and signpost callers to the help they need.

Chris added: “The funds raised will assist us in getting our message and contact details out there for anyone in need to see and hopefully recall at the moment that they most need them.”

Jason from Energie Fitness said: “We will be using our Zoom platform to connect everybody who is taking part in the relay. Participants can sign up, donate and raise funds through the website.

“They will book an individual 20, 40, or 60 minute time slot during which they must take our virtual ‘baton’ and jog or run for their allotted time. When it comes to the end of their run they can get back on to our Zoom meeting to chat with our team and to hand over the ‘baton’ to the next runner.”

Energie Fitness Gym is currently closed but it has refocussed its service by providing a wide ranging and full online timetable for their members to enjoy.

Cllr Bernard Sarson, executive member for partnerships at Welwyn Hatfield Borough Council added: “This event will be a fantastic way to bring our community together in support of this amazing charity.”

Visit hertsdomesticabusehelpline.charitycheckout.co.uk/cf/48-hour-virtual-relay-run-race for more information.

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