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  • Writer's pictureStars and Spokes

Meet Cocksy: The Expedition Fundraising Manager

Cocksy here, AKA the “Expedition Fundraising Campaign Manager”. As we continue our monthly theme of introducing expedition team members, this week it’s my turn to talk to you a bit about the world of raising funds for charity, which is where I am come in.

The obligatory face shot - here I am!

Dan and Pascal are doing this hugely challenging expedition to raise funds for the Royal Navy Royal Marines Charity (RNRMC) (any donations are hugely appreciated!), a fantastic charity that provides mental health support to serving and ex-serving military personnel, and their families. All three of us are serving military officers ourselves, so it's a cause we are all passionate about.

As a serving Aircraft Engineering Officer in the Royal Navy, I care passionately about the expedition cause

Honesty is the best policy here: I have absolutely zero experience of being a Fundraising Campaign Manager for an expedition of this scale! However, I wanted to be involved and help as best I can; unfortunately, I am not able to join them for the actual expedition and (as is probably true for most people) cycling 5000 km across a continent is a little beyond my own cycling ability, but enthusiastically raising the profile of this epic challenge is definitely something I can do!

Having known the guys for over 15 years now, I know just how determined and resilient they both are. Their training programme is pretty brutal, they spend up to 20 hours a week building their cycling endurance. I get their Whatsapp messages at 1 am in the morning, as they return home after a 5 hour training ride in the freezing darkness, having already worked a full day and put the kids to bed. By helping out on the fundraising side, I can help them achieve a bit of much needed down time, and to actually get some sleep - as we collectively aim to get mental health support to those in the Armed Forces who need it most.

I've raised money for charities before, but never on the scale of this expedition!

One of the hardest things we are dealing with at the moment is, unsurprisingly, the COVID pandemic. Not only does it make the actual cycle training more difficult for the guys, it also significantly reduces our ability to fundraise in person and highlight this incredible expedition. We had plans for plenty of high publicity fundraising events in prominent public locations around the country, all of which have had to be changed or cancelled....

However, we are definitely not quitters! This just means that we’re having to think of innovative (and often online) ways of raising awareness and building the donations – so if anyone has any COVID lockdown friendly ideas on how to rise awareness and donations, then please get in touch!

As restrictions (hopefully!) begin to ease in the coming months, we could well be fundraising somewhere near you - keep an eye on our social media for more details.

Your help and support is hugely appreciated by us, and the wider Armed Forces community. Thank you!

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