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Karen's Story

Durham Constabulary’s #TeamKaren conquer Hadrian’s Wall to raise funds for St Cuthbert’s Hospice

Colleagues from B Relief Comms, Durham Constabulary Communications Department are raising funds for St Cuthbert’s Hospice in support of their colleague, Karen Middlemiss, who has recently received care from the charity.

The team have raised over £2,940 to date and their next challenge includes conquering Hadrian’s Wall from Monday 23rd May to Friday 27th May 2022, with colleague Mike wearing full Roman solider armour!

Here Karen shares her story:

“When I was told a few weeks ago that the best place for my pain management was in St Cuthbert’s Hospice my world fell apart. I believed they only arranged end of life care and I was very scared, but I had a wonderful week with the staff there who gave me a room with its own bathroom giving me the independence to get back on my feet. I took showers, baths, had reiki treatments, worked with physios. Occupational health did a home visit and got equipment installed for me that I needed, and the Doctors spent the week getting my pain under control. I have remained in contact with them and they helped me through a recent difficult phase.

Since I left I have not been left to fend for myself, so when my colleague Megan asked me if I was happy for them to fundraise and who I wanted the money to go to, I didn’t have to think twice. I have watched the team with awe at everything they have arranged and how quickly the money started to roll in with lots more to come too. I’ve suggested a dog walk and hope that someone will take my dog Lola along to join as she adores the team and became a bit of a mascot with them.

They were all massively supportive through my initial cancer treatment and still are, whether it is to meet up for a coffee or just to send me a daft joke of the day to make me smile. I know this support will continue, so I will continue to watch their fundraising progress as the money keeps rolling in. If another person like me gets to experience a week or two with the members of staff at St Cuthbert’s who always had a smile, never complained and who took pleasure from something as simple as washing a person’s hair, then I couldn’t be happier to be involved. See you at Wallsend!”

Karen's Collegues Share Their Thoughts

Mike, who is taking on the Hadrian’s Wall challenge for #TeamKaren dressed in full Roman armour said:

“We were all devastated when we heard that Karen’s cancer had returned. She is a much loved colleague and person who’s personality lifted the room every time she is there.

Whilst talking of fundraising ideas, I’d put out the idea of walking the whole of Hadrian’s wall as I felt it was my way of putting a physical analogy that people could see to the challenges that Karen has faced. I decided to add to the challenge by dressing as a legionary with (some of) the kit that a soldier might carry to highlight to those I pass why I am walking and hope to raise further awareness about the vital services that St Cuthbert’s do and to hopefully add some extra funds to a constantly growing kitty.”

Megan, one of Karen’s colleagues in the Communications Department said:

“This is B Relief’s way of showing Karen how much we are all behind her and her beautiful family during this tough time. The events we are planning give Karen the opportunity to be involved and to catch up with the shift. We are amazed at everyone’s generosity so far and hope to raise more cash towards a great cause.”

Kathryn, one of Karen’s colleagues who has helped with the fundraising so far, said:

“Karen spent a short time in St Cuthbert’s Hospice to help get her pain under control. Their care, compassion and expertise was second to none. So as a shift we want to do something to help and to let Karen know we are and always will be #teamkaren 💜 Over the next few months or so we’re going to do our best to raise some cash for St Cuthbert’s to help them care for others.”

Follow along with their challenges and support #TeamKaren by visiting their JustGiving Page

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