Many of us enjoy a stroll along Suffolk’s beautiful coastal path. Few of us would attempt it all 50 miles of it in one go and fewer still would turn round and walk all the way back again! That is exactly what The Rural Coffee Caravan Information Project’s Garry Simmonds intends to do in order to raise much needed funds for this unique and much loved Suffolk charity.
Garry’s expedition begins on 5 September 2012. His journey starts at Landguard Fort in Felixstowe and over the following 8 days he will walk to Lowestoft and back again, around 100 miles in total. His challenge includes a sense of survival as he will camp out in the dunes most nights and arriving back at Landguard Fort on 13 September hopefully around 4pm.
Garry has been a project officer for the Coffee Caravan charity since April 2010 and is passionate about the work it does: ‘I am constantly amazed when I speak to rural residents that haven’t heard of some of the wonderful supportive services we have here in Suffolk and so don’t receive the help they need. It is vital that we try to reach as many people as possible to give them access to everything that is available’.
The charity is a member of The Campaign to End Loneliness and also tackles the problem of rural isolation, defined as “the feeling of powerlessness and disconnection experienced by individuals or groups as a consequence of living in a rural area”. Its services focus on supporting rural people by travelling throughout the county and setting up the Coffee Caravan (mobile café) to deliver free social meeting and event opportunities. These provide, not only information on vital services and initiatives, but tea and cake and the chance for a chat, something many service users have said they sorely miss.
Canon Sally Fogden, Project Founder, is delighted that Garry has volunteered for this mammoth undertaking and has promised that the project will support him every inch of the way. Sally says ‘We are very much hoping to turn this into a bit of an event and ask people to support Garry, not only with donations but also by walking a little way with him or by joining him in the evening for a much needed drink and some company’.
The Rural Coffee Caravan service needs to reach more people living in rural areas and enable them to access vital services to improve their lives. By sponsoring Garry's mammoth effort, you can help us to achieve this.
Gary’s fundraising pages are: Garry's My Donate Page
Or see the link on our website: Rural Coffee Caravan
Garry will tweet along the way so keep up with his progress and give him support by following @garrysimmonds
Today’s photo is of Garry preparing for his trip. Thanks to the Rural Coffee Caravan for photos and text.