After the disappointment of having to cancel its three Rainbow Runs in Newquay, Exeter and Bristol this summer, the fundraising team at Children’s Hospice South West (CHSW) decided to give supporters of the charity the option to take part in the event virtually.

Over the weekend of June 20 and 21 around 2,000 people across the region completed their own 5k some walking, running, swimming, rowing and scooting and all raising more than £70,000 of vital cash for CHSW.

The charity put on virtual warm-ups as well as a virtual after party each day, providing as much of the full event experience usually enjoyed at their annual Rainbow Runs as they could.

Kiley Pearce, events fundraiser for CHSW, said: “We were so overwhelmed by the amount of people that took part in the Virtual Rainbow Run of their own accord and of course the incredible amount they have raised.

"The engagement from people on social media over the weekend was just fantastic and it was humbling to see so many people getting involved.

"It was obviously incredibly sad to make the decision to cancel our three Rainbow Runs – these events usually bring in around £150,000 in total for the charity each summer.

"We are however delighted that so many people still supported us and of course did so in their rainbow colours which are all the more poignant since the start of this pandemic.”

The Virtual Rainbow Run was sponsored by Ann’s Cottage and The Exeter, both companies showing sustained support for the charity through these difficult times.

CHSW’s three children’s hospices, including Little Harbour in St Austell, have adapted their care for children and their families since the start of the coronavirus pandemic.

Now only providing symptom management and end of life care in the hospice, care teams are visiting more families at home as well as providing support virtually for children and their families who will continue to isolate for many more weeks.