Chestnut Tree House Summer Olympics

Chestnut Tree House Summer Olympics

In April, the first Chestnut Tree House Olympics took place, organised by Rose, a young girl cared for by the children’s hospice. Fast forward to 14th July, and the Chestnut Tree House Summer Olympics were held at the hospice near Arundel. Children, families and the care team were joined by the charity’s Vice President, Olympic Champion Sally Gunnell OBE for a morning of fun events.

The original event in April was organised in just 48 hours by Rose, and included a wheelchair race, obstacle course, and an egg and spoon race. Rose had prepared posters, which were displayed around the House the day before, as well as medals and small trophies. Inspired by the success of the event – which involved children, nurses and members of the fundraising team – the hospice’s activities team decided to build on the idea and create the Chestnut Tree House summer Olympics.

The morning kicked off with an opening ceremony, complete with a handmade Olympic torch, before the events started. These included an egg and spoon obstacle dash, target shoot out, hurdles, and a relay race. Sally Gunnell took part alongside the children, getting involved in all the activities. She even brought her 1992 Olympic Gold medal with her for the children to try on. After the events, Sally presented trophies to the winners of each category and all the children who took part were given a medal and certificate.

Cathy Stone, Clinical Director of Chestnut Tree House said:“This type of event really sums up what Chestnut Tree House is all about – being here to offer specialist care, but also creating moments and memories. I’d like to thank Sally Gunnell for being part of the day and for her ongoing support, but a special thank you goes to all the children and families for making the day so special. We’re already looking forward to the Chestnut Tree House Olympics 2020.”

During the Olympics, the children also received a visit from Fidget the pony, who took part in a couple of the races, and The Pizza Oven came to make everyone pizzas for lunch.

  • For enjoying the moment. For crossing the finish line. For the Now.

Chestnut Tree House provides care and support to around 300 children with life-shortening conditions and their families across Sussex and South East Hampshire, both at the hospice and in families’ own homes. The cost of providing this service is over £3.9 million per year, yet the hospice receives less than 6% central government funding so relies on the generosity and support of the community to continue providing vital care to local children and families.