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City Reach sponsored walk 2024

City Reach sponsored walk 2024

On Sunday 3rd March, Canford pupils and staff took part in the annual sponsored walk to raise funds for one of the school’s most established community partnerships, City Reach, now in its 22nd year. City Reach supports the community of Northam, a small neighbourhood near the heart of the city of Southampton which is geographically quite isolated and with few local amenities. An annual programme of visits and activities includes activity weekends at an outdoor education centre, weekend summer camps for 50 youngsters at Canford, theatre visits, trips for the elderly and joint fundraising campaigns. Canford also provides support for the work of the Community Centre and its leaders.

The walk is from Studland to Canford, over 30,000 steps and a distance of 11 miles. It takes in the stunning coastline along the beach to Bournemouth and this year the group were fortunate to walk in the bright Spring sunshine. 

Pupils clearly enjoyed getting out and about while raising funds for such a good cause, as the feedback below illustrates:

I absolutely loved taking part in the City Reach sponsored walk!  Despite having to wake up a little earlier than usual, once we arrived at Knoll Beach this was redeemed by the beautiful views, and the amazing walk along the beach to the chain-ferry!  I think that the hardest part of the walk was possibly here at the start when we had to cross a wide stream running into the sea, with many unsuccessful attempts to jump across it, and a few people with very soggy feet! From the very start until the group photo under the Canford arch at the end, everyone stayed together as one big group, helping to support each other and chat, which made it a really nice day out. In turn it ran very smoothly, and everyone seemed to enjoy themselves, and had a real sense of accomplishment.

As we set off from Studland I knew we had lucked out as the weather was beautiful, not a grey cloud in sight! Walking along the beach was a highlight for me, the sun was shining and everyone was in super high spirits . As our legs began to get a little tired, we had an admirable lunch break overlooking Poole Harbour to recharge our energy.  The final stretch home was all worth it knowing what a good cause it was for, it also helped seeing that I had done 32,000 steps! Although the walk was long, and challenging at times, it gave me a great chance to catch up and have laughs with friends, all while taking in the lovely scenery. The walk was definitely a new challenge for me, however it was a fantastic experience that I encourage all the Canford pupils to try when they can.

I was delighted to have taken part in this year’s City Reach sponsored walk alongside other pupils and teachers. Thankfully, we were lucky with the weather, as the sunshine and relatively warm temperatures followed us throughout the day. I enjoyed how we could come together and walk for a good cause, not distracted by our phones or worries for the week ahead. Instead, we took in the sights around us and engaged in ample conversations. My highlight of the day was when we stopped by the seafront harbour for lunch to catch up with the whole group and also express our excitement for the valued McDonalds stop later.  As we approached the end of our 11-mile walk, everyone was cheered on, and we managed to capture our efforts in a group photo at the front of the Canford gates. I achieved just over 33,000 steps in total, so I can safely say that it was a challenging yet enriching walk.

Despite the brisk, cold morning, spirits were high and encouraged by the sun glistening over the sea. There were various games played along the way, from Eye Spy to ‘Finish the Lyric’ to working out the moves for our Canford House Music competition, each one keeping us energised.  We all stuck together for the majority of the walk, and I got to talk to different people and strengthen friendships.  By the last hour, our feet were hurting, but we pressed on and were home before we knew it!  Thank you, Mr Allen, for organising the walk; it was not just a normal walk for charity, but it was a fun experience to connect and have fun with friends.

City Reach Walk 2024