Sional backs children’s hospice charity bid to raise £30,000

Merchandising company Sional is set to scale dizzying new heights in a bid to help raise £30,000 for a charity caring for children. The North Wales-based company is the headline sponsor for a nine-mile trek to the summit of Snowdon.

Tŷ Gobaith Children’s Hospice in the Conwy Valley and Hope House at Oswestry, Shropshire both provide vital care and support for children with life-limiting conditions and their families.

Sional will be supplying all the branded T-shirts and other promotional items for the event which takes place on July 1, and a team of its own staff will also be joining the intrepid adventurers. The hospices are Sional’s nominated charity for 2018 – the company’s co-founder Sioned Jones worked at Ty Gobaith before setting up the firm with husband Alan.

Organisers of the event are hoping to recruit around 300 walkers to raise at least £30,000, to help towards running costs – it needs £6.3 million every year to keep the two hospices open.

Each walker, who has to pledge to raise £100 each, will get a medal plus hot soup and a roll. Experienced mountain guides will be along the route and at the check in points to ensure everybody stays safe.

Hope House fund-raiser Amanda Jones, who is working with event organisers EightPointTwo Adventure, said: “This is the first time that we have taken on a challenge such as the Snowdon Trek and I am thrilled that we are already seeing a great deal of interest from our supporters.

“The route will follow the Llanberis Trail, which is one of the most popular routes to the summit of the mountain, with breath taking views of the Snowdonia National Park plus Anglesey and the Irish Sea in the distance.

“Obviously, there are some problems over accessibility as this is a tough trek, but we will try as hard as we can to ensure that everybody who wants to take part, can. The minimum age is 14 and anybody under 18 has to be accompanied by an adult.

“We are hoping that one or two of our patrons will also join us on the day, but that’s not yet confirmed as they have such busy diaries. I was delighted when Sional agreed to be our headline sponsor and to supply all the branded T shirts for free, which was a great saving for us. We constantly organise a wide variety of events to help ensure that there is money in the pot to keep our hospices going, as we receive just one month’s funding from statutory bodies. We offer a range of services, including respite and end-of-life care at the hospices or within the family home, and support such as counselling, advocacy and the promotion of children, young people’s and carers’ rights, as well as bereavement counselling.”

Sional, based in Llanfairfechan, supplies more than 60,000 promotional products for customers, from multinational companies, local authorities, health trusts, hotels, sports clubs and schools to one-off private orders for small events. Its promotional items include trophies, banners, key-rings, pens, wallets, toys, bags, umbrellas, branded pens, sports clothing, uniforms and hi-vis workwear, with items sent as far afield as Australia.

Sional co-founder Sioned Jones said: “Before my husband Alan and I set up the company, I worked as a nursing assistant at Tŷ Gobaith along with my sister Pamela so I know what a fantastic place it is. I think it was the best job I ever had because it let me see how good they are to the children and their parents. It has such a happy atmosphere and is also very inspirational.

“So when we heard about the Snowdon Trek we decided that we would sponsor it by providing all the branded T-shirts for free. The great thing about these shirts is that we know that the walkers who take part in this trek will continue to proudly wear them for years to come, and so help promote the excellent work that Hope House Tŷ Gobaith does.

“In fact, we have decided that we will be sending a Sional team to the summit of Snowdon as part of the fund-raising challenge. I hope that we will see the target of £30,000 well and truly smashed by all those taking part.”

Among those backing the event is Katherine Price from Bagillt, Flintshire, whose four-year-old son Corey regularly stays at Tŷ Gobaith. Mrs Price said: “Corey has Dravet Syndrome, a type of epilepsy. He has been coming to Tŷ Gobaith for respite care for some time now and he really loves it.

“For us, it’s a safe space, where we know that he is loved and looked after properly, so my husband Mark and I can have a few hours off. We know that no matter what happens, such as Corey needing medical care while having seizures, he is with people that he loves and who will ensure he has the best possible care.

“We are very grateful to everybody who has signed up to do the walk and would encourage others to think about doing it and so enable Hope House Tŷ Gobaith to continuing to help and support families such as ours.”

It costs £20 to register for the event, and each walker has to raise at least £100. Check-in on July 1 starts at 7.45am

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Four-year-old Corey Price from Flint at Ty Gobaith, with Sioned Jones of Sional Promotional Merchandising