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Gratitude Messages From Us at Osprey

This festive season, our gratitude is taking us on an extraordinary adventure. We want to share with you the things in our life that we at Osprey are most grateful for. For all the people, the places and the moments we treasure. The ones that without them, we would feel less fortunate.

December is a time of reflection and hope. A time to stop and stand still. To share our gratitude to those who have helped us along our individual journey. We want to shed light on stories from our staff to reflect on the important things in life and inspire you to think about for whom and what you are most grateful for this festive season.

Raising vital funds and awareness for Prostate Cancer UK – a gratitude message from Tom Entwistle, Vice President of Sales & Product.

Earlier this year, my father was diagnosed with prostate cancer. It came as a shock to me and my whole family. In February 2021 my dad went to get checked the day after learning a close of friend of his was diagnosed with prostate cancer himself. That appointment could quite simply have saved my dad’s life.  My family and I wanted to do something; we wanted to raise awareness about prostate cancer so that people feel comfortable to go and talk to someone about a check-up.

We came up with the idea to run 200 miles in April to raise funds and awareness for the charity Prostate Cancer UK. The 200 miles is based on a personal story. My father lives in Newquay and most of my family are from near Manchester; since my dad was in isolation during lockdown due to covid restrictions, we wanted to cover the distance between those two places, as if we were walking to visit him.

This challenge was about giving back to the charity who’ve done and continue to do amazing research around prostate cancer and the people behind the amazing work to support others in his position. We exceeded our initial expectations and ended up covering 300 miles, of which I personally covered 170 miles, averaging 11km a day. We raised over £3000 for Prostate Cancer UK.

Raising money and awareness for Prostate Cancer UK meant a lot to me. It brought us closer together as a family, it gave my father something to be positive about and also as an achievement, it provided something that I could concentrate on mentally and physically to take my mind off the negativities and anxiety around family members being in ill health.

I’m most grateful for the support from people, friends and family, and for my father’s recovery. But more so for the amazing people and work that Prostate Cancer UK do. I’m also grateful for my own, and my wider family’s health when something like this puts the world into perspective again. The small things in life are really the big things in reality.

When times are tough, the support of friends and family is important – a gratitude message from Matt Gilbert, UK & Nordic Sales.

Lockdown was a challenge for lots of people and after a very active ‘Lockdown I’, ‘Lockdown III’ had me feeling pretty unmotivated. A good friend from School, Lewis initially asked me whether I would be interested in completing the Goggins Challenge, something I wasn’t aware of and after a quick bit of research, I thought ‘how hard can it be?’.

The challenge itself is named 4x4x48, so run 4 miles (6.44km) every 4 hours for 48 hours, covering 48 miles in 48 hours. So, although it was a physical challenge, it was also mentally tough. During the challenge itself, it wasn’t until the 4th run at 4am, that it dawned on me how tough the following 36 hours were going to be. For someone who is definitely not a morning person, the 4am and 8am runs were the hardest, as well as the added challenge of trying to refuel before and after each run. We certainly wouldn’t have been able to get through the challenge without the support of friends and family messaging us throughout and running various legs and feeding us jelly babies. This challenge re-enforced how important it is to have good people in your life and even when times are tough, like they have been over the last 18 months, there is always someone there for you.

Between us, we raised an amazing £760 for Back Up and Mind. Both charities do great work, Back Up have helped people and families to rebuild their independence after devastating spinal cord injury (SCI) and Mind raises funds to make sure no one has to face a mental health problem alone.

Walking 100km – a challenge I needed – a gratitude message from Rachel Turrill Supply Chain Co-ordinator

I started taking part in ultra-hikes in 2015. Back then I didn’t know how much hiking will benefit me in the future. It has only really been over the past year I have realised the benefits hiking has for me. I have days where I sing (badly) to the hills, days where I walk to put my thoughts in order; but mainly over the past year hiking has helped me cope with grief.

Earlier this year, when events started to reopen, I took part in the 102km ultra-hike from Minehead to Dawlish, aiming to finish in sub 24 hours.

When the day finally came, I felt more ready, both physically and mentally than I ever had before an ultra. In the ever-changing weather I managed to reach the ‘half way’ checkpoint of 53km in 12 hours 6 minutes. Knowing the remainder of the route was relatively flat, my head was telling me I could do this within 24 hours.

My body however had other ideas. Whilst walking down a narrow country lane with only a head torch as light, I started to feel nauseous and turned to the hedge to be sick. I saw a medic who had said I was too low on electrolytes. I had been so focused on timings that I didn’t focus properly on how I was fulling my body. After a rest, food and drinks I felt good to go again so I carried on with a trek master. Another 6km in the nauseous returned. The hike to 82km felt like the longest stretch.

I got in my own head. I wanted medics to tell me that I couldn’t carry on, that way, withdrawing would be out of my control.

I was given anti sickness tablets; I laid my jacket on the damp grass and closed my eyes for half an hour. Managing to keep food and drink down, I decided I wasn’t going to let this beat me. The last 20km was flat, covered in small stones. It felt as if I could feel each one of them through the soles of my boots.

Seeing the finish line was an overwhelming feeling.

I am not sure if I am strong minded, stubborn, determined, or just a little crazy. Maybe all of them. But I needed a challenge and what a challenge it was. I’m so grateful for my mental and physical strength; without it I would have given up. I’m so grateful that I was able to push through and walk over the finish line 29 hours after starting in Minehead. Yes, it is my slowest one, but it was physically and mentally the toughest one yet.

March for Movember – a gratitude story from Osprey staff

In November, Osprey staff members Dagne Taylor, Tom Entwistle, Tom Willmington and Chantal Stracey joined Osprey Endurance Athlete Jake Best as they took part in March for Movember; walking from Lulworth Cove to Swanage which is 15 miles. Despite weather warnings and high gales from Storm Awren, over 60 determined fundraisers exceeded expectations and Marched for Movember across the harshest coastline the South has to offer. From Lulworth Cove to Swanage, the group hit the coastal path hiking over 4,500ft of ascent across 21 miles, battling the high winds and extreme terrain, whilst attacking each hill in true Movember spirit. Offering help, asking for help and accepting help when needed. The group raised over £2,000 for Movember.

This festive season we’re celebrating our collective gratitude. We invite you to join us in sharing what you are most grateful for this festive season. Be that the little things that make a big difference, or the life changing support they give throughout the year. The ones that without them, you would feel less fortunate.



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