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Ravenwood Children’s Trust

Every year Ravenwood Hall and Black Lion Hotel owner Craig Jarvis, embarks on many ventures to the aim of raising money as much money as possible for The Ravenwood Children’s Trust and other local children’s charities. 

During 2009/2010 to celebrate Craig’s 50th birthday he committed to five ultimate challenges with the aim to raise £11,000 – in fact we are delighted that the total amount raised stands at £36,000, smashing the original target.  The challenges were:

CHALLENGE 1 - By Mountain
The National Three Peaks Challenge – a mighty challenge that involved climbing the three highest peaks, respectively, in England, Wales and Scotland and all within 24 hours.

The Peaks were:
• Snowdon (Wales – 1085 metres high)
• Scafell Pike (England – 978 metres high)
• Ben Nevis (Scotland – 1344 metres high)

In a team of eight, timing was everything and we only have a few hours for each mountain. With a designated driver to travel between mountains it enabled the team to sleep on route. The weather was terrible and the rest of Craig’s team decided to turn back half way up, however Craig was determined to complete his very first challenge and continued with another team – but what Craig didn’t know was that the other team would not be accompanying him back down (he descended alone in the middle of the night…).

CHALLENGE 2 - By Road
10k Run - The very next day after the three peaks challenge Craig ran the Official ASICS British 10K London run, raising money for the Rainbow Trust Children’s Charity. It is a popular event that takes runners past many of central London’s famous historic landmarks.  It was unfortunate that Craig’s Three Peak’s team members also left with his trainers, he had to run the entire 10k in his wet and soggy walking boots!

CHALLENGE 3 - By Turf
Newmarket Town Plate – In August 2009 Craig raced in the Newmarket Town Plate horse race.  He had to lose over two stone in weight. The race is for amateur jockeys; it is over 3 miles 6 furlongs in length and was founded back in 1665 by King Charles II. Craig managed to lose the right amount of weight and competed in this famous event.

CHALLENGE 4 - By Trail
With a team of 12 people, Craig set off heading for the start of a 2,000 mile off-road trail motorbike ride that went through some of the most remote parts of Cambodia, a country that has one of the highest infant mortality rates.  This gave Craig a chance to locate new projects for the Ravenwood Children’s Trust to support.  Craig endured high temperatures, rode through some testing terrain and visited remote villages, he is also found a new beneficiary for some funds.

CHALLENGE 5 - By Sand - April 2010
The mighty Marathon Des Sable 2010 - Known as the toughest foot race on earth this is the ultimate endurance race across the Sahara Desert in Morocco and pushes contestants to their absolute limits. Nicknamed the Sand Marathon it covers 151 miles over just 7 days. In addition, competitors had to carry everything they will need to survive - it really is survival of the fittest.  Craig endured the most testing conditions ever, running in 51 degree heat in the day and 2 degree chill at night, over dunes, open plane and rocky mountains. Having to carry and cook all own food along the way, having to consume 13 litres of water a day to survive and with incredible sore feet. Body management, foot care and mental strength was the key to completing this amazing race, where he finished in 685th place out of well over 1,000 competitors - British Olympian James Cracknell came in at 12th position.

Beneficiaries:
To date the following causes have benefitted over the years:

  • St Nicholas Hospice Care
  • Ravenwood Montessori School in Sri Lanka
  • St Cristobel’s children’s home in Goa
  • Multiple Sclerosis
  • A garden for the Rainbow children’s ward at West Suffolk hospital Bury St. Edmunds
  • The Lord Taverner’s Club
  • Riding for the disabled
  • A purpose built bicycle for a handicapped child
  • A winch for disabled children at the swimming pool in Bury St. Edmunds
  • Rhys Daniel Trust
  • Facing Africa – children ravaged by Norma

Future projects and challenges:
Ravenwood Children’s Trust also helps local charities and individual cases whenever possible.  A new project Craig discovered on challenge 4 was a tiny village in the heart of Cambodia.  He has already sent parcels of clothes for the children and intends to assist further in the future.

During 2011 with everyone’s help, Craig hopes to continue to boost fund.  EACH (East Anglia Children’s Hospice) are building a new hospice in Ipswich which needs £3.7 million, so they really do need our help.  We are trying to raise £10,000 for this treehouse appeal – for more details see www.each.org.uk/treehouse.