Spacehoppers and tears – Dorset bounces into action for the RNLI’s Mayday Appeal

Lifeboats News Release

Fundraisers will be walking, running and bouncing across Dorset this month as the RNLI holds its annual Mayday appeal to raise much-needed funds for the charity that saves lives at sea.

The RNLI’s Amanda Reid gets in some bouncing practice for her Mayday challenge.

RNLI

The RNLI’s Amanda Reid gets in some bouncing practice for her Mayday challenge.

In preparation for a busy summer of staycations, with millions of people expected to head to the coast, the RNLI is putting out its own Mayday call by asking supporters to take part in the Mayday Mile to raise funds.

Whether you choose to swim it, run it, cycle it or even bounce it, the Mayday Mile challenges people to cover one mile in anyway they like between Sunday 1 May and Monday 31 May to support the charity.

Among those in Dorset who have already begun fundraising is the RNLI’s Marketing and Visitor Experience Lead Richard Lee. Richard decided one mile was just not enough and instead opted to run a mile every hour for twenty four hours – in full crew kit!

‘RNLI volunteer lifeboat crews can be called out at anytime of the day or night to go in aid of those in distress,’said Richard, from Christchurch. ‘As a nod of recognition to these brave and selfless volunteers, who are facing their busiest summer season yet, I decided to undertake the whole challenge in full lifeboat crew kit. No sleep, heavy kit and 24 miles’!

Richard, who continued his run through the night, said he had been absolutely amazed by the support he had received from the local community and has already raised more than £2,000 for the RNLI appeal: ‘Where I was running there were people on the doorsteps clapping each mile, even after dark. It’s been absolutely incredible, it literally brings tears to my eyes’.

To find out more about Richard’s challenge click here: https://themaydaymile.rnli.org/fundraising/richards-24miles-in-24hours

Meanwhile the RNLI’s Amanda Reid is going back to her childhood her Mayday Mile by undertaking the challenge on an iconic orange spacehopper! Amanda, who is the charity’s Regional Engagement Lead for the South East and based in Poole, will be bouncing her mile around a local park to raise funds for the charity that saves lives at sea.

‘Twenty years ago I spent the summers bouncing around my garden on ‘Stella’ the spacehopper. We were quite the team, often tackling obstacles and jumps in our heyday. Fast forward and I’m now preparing to revisit my youth and lose my dignity to raise money for a charity I love and that has saved so many lives’.

‘The RNLI has answered Mayday calls for nearly 200 years from sinking fishing boats to families swimming on busy beaches to dog walkers cut off by the tide. Mayday is the most urgent plea, used by mariners in immediate danger and when lifesavers hear those words they lauch courageously into the unknown’.

‘This May, as summer approaches, our lifesavers are the ones sending out a Mayday call. As we look forward to 2021 and beyond, they know they'll be facing their busiest summer yet so its up to us to answer the call so they can keep saving lives’.

To find out more about Amanda’s challenge click here: https://themaydaymile.rnli.org/fundraising/amanda-reids-spacehopper-mile

With restrictions on travel in 2020, RNLI crews were busier than ever across the south east, with 13% more lifeboat launches than in 2019 and a 45% increase in people aided by the volunteer crews. With restrictions ongoing, it looks likely that this summer will be at least as busy on our beaches and our lifeguards and volunteer crews need your support to save every one.

If you have any fun, challenging, original ideas for participating in a Mayday Mile to support the RNLI, please sign up at https://themaydaymile.rnli.org/

Photo captions:

Amanda Mayday: The RNLI’s Amanda Reid gets in some bouncing practice for her Mayday challenge.

Richard Mayday 2: The RNLI’s Richard Lee taking part in his 24 hour, 24 mile Mayday challenge.

Richard Mayday 1: Richard celebrates after an exhausting 24 hours which has raised more than £2000 for the RNLI so far.

RNLI media contacts

Paul Dunt, RNLI Regional Media Officer for the South East and London (07785) 296252 paul_dunt@rnli.org.uk

Julie Rainey, RNLI Regional Media Manager for the South East and London (07827) 358256 julie_rainey@rnli.org.uk

The RNLI’s Richard Lee taking part in his 24 hour, 24 mile Mayday challenge.

Derek Hopkins

The RNLI’s Richard Lee taking part in his 24 hour, 24 mile Mayday challenge.
Richard celebrates after an exhausting 24 hours which has raised more than £2000 for the RNLI so far.

Derek Hopkins

Richard celebrates after an exhausting 24 hours which has raised more than £2000 for the RNLI so far.

Key facts about the RNLI

The RNLI charity saves lives at sea. Its volunteers provide a 24-hour search and rescue service around the United Kingdom and Republic of Ireland coasts. The RNLI operates over 238 lifeboat stations in the UK and Ireland and, in a normal year, more than 240 lifeguard units on beaches around the UK and Channel Islands. The RNLI is independent of Coastguard and government and depends on voluntary donations and legacies to maintain its rescue service. Since the RNLI was founded in 1824, its lifeboat crews and lifeguards have saved over 142,700 lives.

Learn more about the RNLI

For more information please visit the RNLI website or Facebook, Twitter and YouTube. News releases, videos and photos are available on the News Centre.

Contacting the RNLI - public enquiries

Members of the public may contact the RNLI on 0300 300 9990 (UK) or 1800 991802 (Ireland) or by email.

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