Could you kayak 60 miles in less than a day?! Stephen Barclay, a Bluefin fanatic and kayak-loving father from Bristol set off on an all-night quest to raise money for an extremely good cause.
Stephen journeyed from Taunton to Bridgewater along the canal and back again – twice! All to raise money for the Ronald McDonald House in Bristol. He completed the massive 60-mile long stretch in 23 hours, with food, water and friends to help along the way.
The Ronald McDonald House is a cause close to Stephens’ heart. His daughter Molly was diagnosed with a heart murmur when she was 5, which on closer inspection turned out to be a lump that obstructed one of her valves. This meant that she had to undergo surgery. Molly, who at the time was only 5 years old, had her surgery and recovery time in a hospital that was not local to Stephen and his family. Due to the busy hospital, only one parent can stay with a child overnight, this left Stephen sleeping in his car overnight in the middle of Bristol.
This is where The Ronald McDonald house came in! The charity offers housing that’s near your hospitalised child. Alongside financial and emotional help for families going through the stress of their child’s illness. Stephen and his wife could steal a few hours of sleep and a hot shower, for no cost, whilst Molly was in the hospital. The Ronald McDonald House had helped millions of families since it was established in 1974, it has houses in over 63 different countries and has 6 places in the UK.
Stephen first contacted us about his fundraising plans in August last year and since then has been giving us regular updates on his training. As soon as we heard that his plans to kayak and the cause we knew we had to be involved! We felt as though for such an arduous event he would need the best tools for the job! We gave him a brand-new Bluefin Kayak to support him on his journey!
He began at 11.40am on May 5th and kayaked through until 10.40am the following day. Even though he is still recovering from a back injury he managed to stay safe and sane and complete his journey. Stephen has raised £1150 so far, and he hopes to raise even more!
We would like to say Thank You to Stephen for all the updates – we have loved following your story. Here at BluefinHQ think this is such a worthy cause. We plan to support Stephen in any of his future events. If you would like to donate to this cause or find out more about Stephens journey click here.