Netball Family's running challenges helping to raise money

These fundraising stories from the past few months show how special the netball community is by running to raise money.

While netballers might be more used to sprinting around a netball court than going for an epic long-distance run, we’ve been seeing lots of brilliant ways that running has been keeping you motivated.

Whether it’s running to raise funds for charity, to keep your physical and mental wellbeing in check, or to all be doing something together as a team (even if you’re running separately!), the benefits are showing up and down the country.

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We’ve been really impressed by lots of clubs who have turned their running efforts into a fundraising success, including the University of Portsmouth Netball Club (along with 19 other sports societies from Portsmouth) who ran as far as possible in seven days, through a challenge named ‘UoP Running for the NHS’.

At the end of the seven-day period, 118 netball club members had managed to run more than double their target, completing the challenge with 2230.61km! Altogether, 430 sport participants had completed a huge 12,160km, and raised £4,230 for the Association of NHS Charities ­– you can donate here and help get that figure even higher.

And they’re not the only teams running to raise money. Fifty-five women at Southampton University Netball Club managed to run a massive 1846.86km in seven days! “We thought, what better way to utilise our one authorised daily exercise, as it was then, than for the benefit of the NHS?” says the club’s organiser.

Incredibly, they have raised over £4,500 for NHS charities, smashing their 1,000km running target and £500 fundraising target, which you can contribute to here.

Plus, University of Warwick Netball Club aimed to run 1,257 miles over 10 days, for the 1,257 NHS hospitals fighting on the front line against Coronavirus; in fact they got to 1,285 miles! “The NHS have been working so hard and as a club we want to show our appreciation,” says organiser Lina.

“We are very proud of everyone who got involved, and everyone that supported us; whether it was a donation, a share or just a like.” They have raised over £1,800 so far for NHS Charities Together, and are aiming to get to £2,000; you can donate here.

And not to be outdone by the university netball teams, Portsmouth-based junior club Jelly Netball Club have achieved an outstanding running challenge. Having already smashed 130km between them – the distance between Portsmouth and the NHS Nightingale Hospital in London – the youngsters then ‘ran’ to the Nightingale Hospital in Birmingham and back again, reaching 538km. Everything from jogging around the lounge and on a crosstrainer at home to a local run, the efforts were varied and very impressive by the girls.

But that wasn’t enough, so they then embarked on a new challenge: climbing mountains! Via pacing up and down the stairs in their homes, the players have climbed the equivalent of Mount Everest, and adults have climbed the equivalent of Mount Kilimanjaro.

“All those taking part paid a £5 donation to charity,” says Julie Osborne, who runs the club and reveals the girls’ fundraising efforts have so far raised £1,625 for Portsmouth Hospitals Charity!

We’ve been so impressed by the efforts made by the netball community – if you have been fundraising for a charity, whether it’s by running or something else entirely, let us know by tagging @EnglandNetball on social media or emailing content@englandnetball.co.uk.

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Written by Lucy Higgins

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