PORSE Educators and staff are stepping it out this September for a good cause.
More than 170 PORSE Educators and staff from around New Zealand have registered for Steptember and set a combined target to raise $32,155.00 for Cerebral Palsy.
The average office worker takes just 3,000 steps a day, whereas PORSE Educators and staff registered for Steptember have set themselves the challenge of taking 10,000 steps a day for 28 days straight.
For Dunedin Educator Barbara Hamilton, it’s a cause close to her heart. She spent two years caring for a boy with Cerebral Palsy years ago and never lost touch with the family that moved away. Unfortunately, he died from the complications of having Cerebral Palsy recently. Barbara says she’ll be doing Steptember in memory of him.
“He was such a lovely, kind caring person…it was hard to say goodbye. So, this is definitely a cause close to my heart.”
With four children in her care, Barbara spends a lot of time on her feet.
“I hit 1,000 steps in just 15 minutes following my daughter around the playground,” she says. However, she is prepared to top up her steps on quieter days with a walk with her PORSE team-mates who have raised $270 for the Cerebral Palsy Society so far.
Up in Waikato, PORSE Programme Tutor Kylee Jhaveri and her team, ‘Hamilton Happy Feet’, are using the challenge as a team-bonding exercise.
“We put on our pedometers on Friday and realised just how little we walk because we sit at our laptops, drive to our home visits and then sit and chat with our Educators. We’ve started by walking the long way to the photocopier but we’re really going to have to step it up,” Kylee says.
PORSE Education and Training General Manager Erin Maloney says Steptember is a great health and wellbeing initiative as well as a worthy cause, helping Kiwis living with Cerebral Palsy.
“We’re excited that so many of our staff and Educators have got behind this initiative and are passionate about helping others in our community,” Erin says.
“It also models a powerful message for the children that we care for around the importance of keeping active and nurturing our health and wellbeing. Through our community programme, our children benefit from the environment as their third teacher. Steptember is a great way for us to encourage our PORSE whānau to get out and about in their community.”
Steptember National Manager Shelly Reilly says PORSE has one of the largest groups of Steptember participants along with Coca Cola, Fonterra, T&G and Vodafone.
This year about 18,000 New Zealanders will be taking part in the global event which is also run in Australia, the United States of America, Singapore, The Netherlands and Turkey. Last year, Kiwis raised $960,000 for The Cerebral Palsy Society.
Shelly says the money raised by Steptember is a significant contribution to The Cerebral Palsy Society and goes towards a range of programmes, including vouchers for physical activities and taxi travel.
Cerebral Palsy is the most common disability in childhood, with one in every 500 children born in New Zealand being affected by Cerebral Palsy in some way.
You can support the Cerebral Palsy Society by making a donation: https://event.steptember.org.nz/donate.