A schoolboy whose mum and granddad were cared for by by the Hospice of St Francis is urging his whole school to sign up for its festive Santa Dash event this month.
Sam Morley, 10, who is sports ambassador at Bovingdon Primary Academy, joined hundreds of Santas in the family fundraiser last year – with 15 of his teammates from Camelot Under-10’s rugby squad, five coaches and a dozen parents surprising him with their support on the day.
“I had so much fun dressing up as Santa,” he said. “I raised over £2k for the hospice and it’s a great way to get fit and raise money for those who need it.
“I like doing the Dash in memory of my mum and grandad, and I think my mum would be really proud of me for doing it – especially now that I’m getting my whole school involved.”
The keen rugby player, from Shothanger Way, Bovingdon, has already recruited his Head of School, Jill Mewha, the school’s Chair of Governors, Nic Leon, five teachers and ten fellow pupils, including the school’s other sports ambassador Megan Calfe, 11, to join him on the 2.5-mile dash through Hemel Hempstead.
The school has set up a JustGiving page (https://www.justgiving.com/Bovingdon-Primary-Academy/) and has already raised £160 of its £500 target, which Sam says he really wants to ‘smash’.
Jill Mewha said: “I’m really proud of Sam for suggesting that we do this as a school.
“At Bovingdon, we believe it’s important to do things for the community, help other people and stay fit and healthy.
“It’s a fantastic idea to get everyone involved in a big community event to support such a worthwhile cause, which has helped lots of families from our school in the past and I’m sure will continue to do so in the future.”
Hospice Events Organiser Nicky Maxwell-Braithwaite, said: “The Santa Dash marks the start of Christmas celebrations for local people; it’s a fabulous family event and anybody can join in the fun.
“There are spot prizes too for our top fundraisers, including a year’s family membership to Hemel’s Snow Centre and an hour’s family ski or snowboarding lesson – and of course there’s the Dasher’s Cup for our top fundraising school.”
The Santa Dash starts at 10am in Riverside, Hemel Hempstead, on Sunday December 13, when hundreds of Santas on two and four legs will set off to walk, dash, scoot or jog the 2.5 mile route.
Local families, friends and jingle dogs are being invited to follow Bovingdon Primary School’s lead and sign-up to secure their place at www.stfrancis.org.uk/santadash
It costs just £35 for the whole family (including the dog), £15 for adults and £5 for children, which includes Santa suits, a hot drink and mince pie at the finish line and treats for the children and dashing dogs!