This year, Method4’s annual charity challenge has looked a little different. Separated by the pandemic, we had to find a new way to work together for our charity, but we made the most of the opportunity to cover communally a distance that would have been a lot more intimidating in person! After a long voting process, the team chose to travel the distance from Land’s End to John O’Groats – a meagre 1407-kilometre hike!
While the real trek carries you from Devon through Somerset, the Peak District and up to the Northernmost tip of Scotland, we had to traverse the same distance through our own local roads and parks instead, enjoying some more familiar scenic views along the distance.
In light of the pandemic, this year we chose to raise money for Mind Cymru, who are helping people all across Wales navigate the enormous changes that have affected us all so much in the last year. Studies have found that the proportion of adults reporting clinically significant levels of psychological distress rose from 20.8% in 2019 to 29.5% in April 2020*, and it is the work of charities like Mind Cymru that provide the vital resources and support to help us get through tough patches like these.
To keep track of our progress as a team we ran, walked or cycled every day, logging the distance covered with our Fitbits or smart phones and cheering each other on along the way. While we got off to a gentle start, we quickly picked up the pace as the month progressed, collectively smashing 36 kilometres in a single day when it looked like we might lag behind our goal. It took a great team effort – and a few hero cyclists – to pull through in the end, but we managed to surpass our goal and instead covered 1,486.32km as a team!
As gruelling as the situation was, the change of circumstances did offer one benefit, as we got to retire to the office for Scottish treats immediately after. As sweet as those were, they were nowhere near as rewarding as the £690 we raised for Mind Cymru, and we couldn’t be prouder of our achievement.
*From: Longitudinal changes in psychological distress in the UK from 2019 to September 2020 during the COVID-19 pandemic.