Ten-year-old Mason Nelmes and his eight-year-old sister, Phoebe, have walked 154 miles during their daily exercise time over the last month to help fund the purchase of a magic table at Penberthy, a Cornwall Care home in Newquay.
On Saturday, Phoebe’s eighth birthday, they completed their impressive effort in the home’s garden, where they were roundly applauded by staff. In total, they have so far raised more than £2000 between them – a considerable contribution towards the cost of the table, which is designed to stimulate brain activity, reduce anxiousness and stimulate social interaction.
To achieve their aim of walking 154 miles – the distance from Plymouth to Land’s End on the South West coastal path – the children spent hours each day exploring routes around Newquay with their parents. Whilst totting up the mileage, they were also learning a lot about their local environment.
“It’s been an amazing experience,” said mum Patricia, who has been working as a senior carer at Penberthy for the last sixteen years. “Each walk has resulted in new discoveries and the amount received in donations is incredible. Gareth and I are so proud of what the children have done. It really is extraordinary.”
A donation of £250 was dropped into the home shortly after Phoebe and Mason had crossed the finishing line.
“A lovely lady who has been shielding for the last twelve weeks gave it to us,” said Cornwall Care manager Sue Aldridge. “Her uncle had apparently been well looked after at Penberthy during the 1950s and she had been following the children’s progress with interest. She said their adventures made her feel less isolated and donating was her way of showing appreciation to both them and the home.”
Phoebe and Mason were originally hoping to raise about £500 and are over the moon to have achieved four times that amount.
“They are extraordinary and we can’t thank them enough,” said Cornwall Care CEO Anne Thomas. “The coronavirus pandemic has been a challenging time for everyone but, as Phoebe and Mason have proved, it has also highlighted some fantastic feats of endurance and generosity.”