Members of Julia’s House ‘Team 13’ raised a staggering £70,000 to help the families of seriously ill children across Dorset and Wiltshire, as they completed their recent Run Bournemouth half marathon challenge. The team was led by one of the charity’s fundraisers, Caroline Attreed, to celebrate her thirteenth year at Julia’s House.

Julia's House Team 13 at the start of the Run Bournemouth half marathon

After deciding at the beginning of 2022 that running the half marathon would be a fitting way to mark her milestone anniversary at Julia’s House, Caroline sought the help of Julia’s House ambassador and CEO of The Richmond Group, James Benamor to help bring her vision to life. Together they invited other local business leaders to join the challenge, and assembled a team of thirteen keen participants. The members of Team 13, as it became known, have trained together, fundraised and have now successfully completed their half marathon target.

Alongside Caroline and James, Team 13 is comprised of Alex Bonnet (CEO, Venaspace), Brian Parker (CEO, Britannia Parking & Julia’s House Chair), Chris Fairfax (CEO, Catalyst Property Finance), Doug Sheppard (MD, Parvalux), Iain Williams (CEO, Quick Car Finance), Kelly Black (Director, Richmond Group), Mark Nixon (Partner, Threthowans & Julia’s House Trustee), Martin McAndrew (Director, Blue Thirst), Pip Woods (MD, Rockley Watersports & Julia’s House Ambassador), Tobias Britton (MD, Globacare), Anthony ‘Staz’ Stazicker (Co-Founder, Thru Dark Ltd) and Michelle Cross (PR Manager, OnBuy).  The team was helped by Personal Trainer Sash Von Rappard, who joined them for training runs and provided motivational support. They were joined at Run Bournemouth by Julia’s House CEO Martin Edwards, who also completed the half marathon.

Says Caroline, “They have all made me so proud! It’s been a privilege to train with and get to know everyone on Team 13.  Julia’s House has been a really big part of my life and what has been achieved at Run Bournemouth is astonishing. We have come together to be part of something very special that will make a huge difference to the lives of local families.   I will be forever grateful to The Richmond Group, James and all the fantastic business leaders who became part of this journey. Also huge thanks to Superior Seals Ltd, who donated £13,000 - £1,000 for every mile the team ran - to Fireworx, who designed a unique team logo that will always make me smile, and to everyone who donated and supported the team during what is a difficult time for many people financially.”

James Benamor recalls, “I met Caroline when our business first started employing people.  Caroline had just started working for Julia’s House, and I had just had a near miss when my son was diagnosed with a non-degenerative form of muscular dystrophy after everyone initially believed he had Duchenne’s Muscular Dystrophy.  Over the last thirteen years it has been truly fantastic working with Caroline, Julia’s House CEO Martin Edwards and the whole Julia’s House team.

“Julia’s House has given The Richmond Group a way of directly giving back to the most vulnerable children and families in the community that both we and our teams live in.   Supporting Julia’s House has made us a better place to work, which has always been the primary reason for our success.  When we donate to Julia’s House we’re just giving back some of the benefit that we have gained over the last thirteen years.

“It has been an absolute pleasure supporting Caroline on this challenge, and working and training alongside the team, especially those for whom the challenge was a real stretch. From the initial meeting that Caroline and I had in our office back at the beginning of the year, it has been great to see the team come together, and watch each person pushing the limits of what they believed possible.”

Team 13 member, ‘Staz’ Stazicker, Founder of Thru Dark, commented, “It was amazing to see a team of strangers unite in a challenging physical endeavour for such a great cause.  Julia’s House is a fantastic local charity and I am so proud of the guys for how much we raised and am humbled by the generosity of all those who donated.”

The specialist team of nurses, carers, family support workers and therapists at Julia’s House provide a lifeline of support to local families who have a child requiring 24-hour care for their complex or rare medical condition. The team is able to offer clinical, emotional and practical support tailored to each family’s own specific needs, and give exhausted parents essential respite so they don’t reach breaking point.

Julia’s House relies on public donations, fundraising and legacies for 92 per of the money needed to keep providing its vital care – the charity receives only eight per cent ongoing Government funding. Without the support of the local community, Julia’s House would not be able to run this critical service for the growing number of families in Dorset and Wiltshire that depend on its care and support.