Stepping up for Shelter: Stories from our supporters

Read some amazing stories about supporters who have raised funds for ShelterBox in early 2024.

8 May 2024

Group of people holding sign with £930 on it

ShelterBox supporters are amazing people. They challenge themselves to raise funds to support our work. Without them, we would be a lot further from our goal to ensure that no one is without shelter after disaster.

Over the last few months we have had a number of wonderful supporters contribute to our work. Here are some of their stories. And if you feel inspired and would also like to fundraise for ShelterBox, visiting our Fundraising page for more information!

Daredevil exploits and physical challenges

Some of our supporters go the extra mile – literally! Epic walks and marathons are just some of the challenges they have taken on.

Man with walking poles in the Scottish highlands
Adam Lea will be taking on 100 miles in the Scottish Highlands for his fundraising effort!

One example of this is Adam Lea. An experienced hillwalker, he is putting his skills to the test by planning to walk 100 miles in the Scottish Highlands. In doing so he’ll also climb 10,000 metres! Not a challenge for the faint hearted, by taking on this walk Adam hopes to raise over £1000 for ShelterBox. He was inspired to support our work through the Rotary Club in Horsham. And with a job managing the risk of tropical storms, he knows just how devastating a loss of shelter can be.

He said, “Tropical storms are some of the most destructive extreme weather events globally, and ShelterBox supports people who have been affected, so I wanted to do something to help.

We wish Adam all the best in his challenge – if you’d like to support him you can do so on his JustGiving page.

ShelterBoots: Dedicated Dave raises £11,500 for ShelterBox
On his ShelterBoots adventure Dave Foster raised over £11,500 for ShelterBox.

If 100 miles sounds like a lot, what about 400 miles? That was tackled by retired vicar Dave Foster who walked across England and Wales. In doing so he had to take on overgrown footpaths, and even the odd spot of wild camping! Dubbing his walk ‘ShelterBoots’, Dave raised over £11,500 for ShelterBox.

Wild camping was something I’ve not done much of for years, and I was blessed with warm weather and decent equipment.” Dave said. “I can’t imagine what it must be like for people who have been forced to flee their homes in terrifying situations, leaving everything they know and own behind. ShelterBox supports people around the world who have been left without shelter, and with very little essentials to stay alive.

You can watch a video about Dave’s journey here.

Composite image of man and woman
Dan Page and Shannon Peall tackled the Brighton Marathon to raise funds for ShelterBox

Another challenge some of our supporters take on are marathons. In April, we had two people running the Brighton Marathon to raise funds for ShelterBox. Dan Page was inspired to enter by his Mum who has been a long-term volunteer and supporter of ShelterBox. Shannon Peall also took on the challenge, despite having to train in the British winter! She had found following ShelterBox highlighted crises that were often overlooked in the media, and wanted to do something to help. Both Dan and Shannon hit their fundraising goals. Together they raised over £1000 to support our work.

Thurso resident Derek Sinclair in his ShelterBox running jersey.
Derek Sinclair is taking on a trio of races to raise funds for ShelterBox, and to mark his last months as President of the Rotary Club of Thurso.

And if one marathon seems like a lot of effort, imagine doing three long runs in three months! That’s being tackled by Derek Sinclair. He ran the Inverness Half Marathon in March, the London Marathon in April and plans to tackle the Edinburgh Marathon in May. Derek will soon be stepping down as President of Thurso Rotary Club and wanted to mark his last months with a bang. With his three races, which he has dubbed the ‘Trilogy of Hope’, Derek aimed to raise £1000 for ShelterBox, a cause close to his heart. And he’s already smashed his target! You can support him on his Just Giving page.

Group of 4 people holding a ShelterBox banner above the Eden Project
Anne Nicholas was joined by three members of her family as she took on the zipline at the Eden Project on her 80th birthday.

Finally we must share the story of one of our more daredevil supporters. Anne Nicholas took on the zipline at Cornwall’s Eden Project headfirst – England’s fastest. And Anne braved this to fundraise for ShelterBox to mark her 80th birthday! She was joined by two of her children and one of her grandsons as she took on the challenge. Her greatest fear was not the height or speed, but that her journey down the zipwire might be cancelled due to the weather! Anne raised over £500 for ShelterBox, a charity she had previously supported as part of fundraising efforts by her church group. And it seems Anne has not finished taking on such adventures! “My daughter wants me to do the world’s fastest zipwire which happens to be in Wales for my birthday next year.” she said “But I’ve decided I shall leave that to my 90th!

Singing for ShelterBox

We have also recently been supported by three generous choirs. Popular Cornish community choir the Suitcase Singers (pictured at the top of the page) raised nearly £1000 through concerts in 2023. The choir have supported us for some years and sang at our Christmas Carol Concert in Truro Cathedral in December. Their performance ended up partly being under the stars after a fire alarm caused everyone to be evacuated!

Group of people holding a banner reading 'Thank you for £1000 donation ShelterBox'
The Ingleheart singers raised £1000 for ShelterBox

The Ingleheart singers also raised money for ShelterBox during their concerts in 2023. Another Cornish Community Choir, they named ShelterBox as their International Charity of the Year. Together they raised over £1000. Moving forward, the choir have elected to keep ShelterBox as their International Charity of the Year on an ongoing basis. Like the Suitcase Singers, they also performed at the ShelterBox Christmas Carol Concert. They noted that with the evacuation it was a night they would ‘never forget’!

Group of people wearing yellow and black, one holding a cheque
The Torpoint Lady Singers present a check to ShelterBox

ShelterBox was also the charity of the year for another choir, the Torpoint Lady Singers. They took donations at the door for their performances instead of tickets, and held raffles. Through this they were able to raise over £1000 for us during 2023.

Funding a Tent for Lent

Our annual Tent for Lent appeal encourages people to give up something or raise funds to mark Lent. As with previous years, we had a number of keen fundraisers rise to the challenge!

Man wearing a ShelterBox t-shirt outside a tent
Churchwarden Richard Hunt spent one night a week in a tent in his churchyard to raise funds for Tent for Lent.

One such fundraiser was Churchwarden Richard Hunt. He slept one night a week in his churchyard in a tent – braving chilly temperatures and a very soggy spring in the process. He raised over £4000 by doing so.

Sarah Wanigasooriya, who has mild Cerebal Palsy, raised funds through swimming 7,166 metres throughout Lent. This was one meter for every kilometre between her home in High Wycombe, and Damascus in Syria, and back again. Sarah chose this location to help raise awareness of the ongoing conflict in Syria. This has caused millions to be displaced. ShelterBox has been working in Syria for over 10 years. Sarah’s Church has also been raising funds for ShelterBox during Lent.

Jenn Sandiford and her dog Groot went on litter picks as part of our Tent for Lent campaign

Another Tent for Lent fundraiser was Jenn Sandiford, who went litter picking every day. She was ably assisted by her dog Groot in her mission to tidy up her local area and raise funds for ShelterBox. Together they raised over £700. And Alison Jones took on two challenges. She not only walked one mile every day for 40 days, but also gave herself a ‘leisure tax’. This meant putting aside money for each leisure activity she did during Lent. Through both challenges she raised nearly £700.

Altogether, for Tent for Lent 2024 our fundraisers raised over £11,000!


To all our wonderful supporters, a massive thank you. People like you help make our work possible.

For more information on how to support our work, remember to visit our Fundraising page. And for the latest news about our supporters and our work you can read our press releases here.