Fundraisers provide the lifeblood for the work the RAF Benevolent Fund carries out. Their efforts to raise money never fail to amaze – and none more so than Corporal Ray Casson who has set himself two incredible challenges. He tells us more in this guest blog.
2015 saw me posted to RAF Waddington so I decided to fill a bit of my time with fundraising.
When I arrived I looked for a challenge that could be interesting and something I could put a bit of a spin on and, sure enough, while completing my arrivals I saw a poster for Airfield Anarchy.
As for the challenge, why not try and cover 75km as it's the 75th anniversary of the Battle of Britain. Somewhere in my head I decided it would be an even better idea to wear Osprey body armour while doing it!
Everything was put in place: Just Giving page set up, Twitter account set up and a bit a of a learning curve as social media is not my strong point. Training went really well, with plenty of running and exploring the local area and some strange looks because there’s a bloke running around with a very large rucksack.
Then for some strange reason I decided to take part in Spitfire Scramble in September, a 24-hour endurance race, and just for even more giggles carry a 40Ib Bergan (rucksack).
I think I'm part of a common trend of getting into my 30s and needing to challenge myself to prove I can be young forever!
I've completed many fundraising events for RAF charities during my time, but never anything as challenging as these two events.
With my new found hobby of running and seeing all the good work that goes on at Waddington by the RAF Benevolent Fund through Airplay which my kids use a lot (keeps them off the computers), I decided why not try to give something back to the Fund this time?
I've seen first hand some of the other work they do and have visited the holiday homes on the south coast of England, which are used to give breaks to serving and retired families of the RAF, and through my life experiences, I can see the benefits which the charity provides to people who need them - whether they just returned from an overseas deployment or they have a child with disabilities and it's a chance for a break.
I've also heard stories from colleagues who have had support from the Fund and they have nothing but praise and are extremely grateful for the help they received, all of which couldn’t be done without the support through fundraising.
My aim is to raise £750 through both challenges and by the time I've completed Spitfire Scramble I hope to have passed it. I have a few ideas for some local fundraisers as well which will help boost the money raised.
If you would like to add to Ray's fundraising efforts, click here.