The long anticipated RETURN of the GROUP missions.
After 16 months of waiting patiently it was time to welcome back the groups, in one of our new outside locations at Sport Wales National Arena. With the Heat belting down, it was the shade for us, so Michael met 11 avid goodgymers ready to take on the challenge of making their way through the sweating streets of Cardiff.
Today was not a day for pre run games as we wanted to survive the run, so we split into our two groups the walk / joggers and the runners and made our way. As we ran, we surveyed the area ahead of us for any kind of shade as we meandered to our task through the streets radiating even more heat.
Is it much farther????? Oasis ahoy..
We arrived at our task, and what a joy it was to behold. There was a large shaded gazeebo with chairs, ready to rest our weary legs. A few of us had spent the weekend running at a race in Dorset - The Cider Frolic, so a quick rest was very much welcomed. Once the second group arrived it was time to get to work.......
Water the plants, at the base so as not to burn the leaves.
Cut back an overgrown Ivy, to gain access to the outside stairs.
Litter pick any rubbish also in the vegetation.
Chat to each and every one of the groups.
Enjoy the return of group tasks.
Decide if you are joining the group for a drink after the return trip.
Okay, so the last three were not really task related, but equally important on our first group back I feel.
Before we knew it, our time at Oasis was coming to an end, but just enough left to wander with our resident goodgymer Karolina who looks after the space in her spare time, and to hear about the work that had gone on plus the food they had already grown and used in the kitchens. And of course, ending with our Group Photo.
We mixed up the running pairs on the return trip and continued to talk about what we had been up to, any training that we were doing and how life was feeling for us at the moment. As BT would say.........'It's good to talk'.
With a quick stretch to cool down, we said our goodbyes to those not going to the pub and then made our way for even more chatting and catching up.
Until next week.....
Oasis is a great charity that offers a warm Welsh welcome to refugees and asylum seekers.
Last year we were able to complete a community mission there to help create a growing space,
now for our FIRST GROUP run in a very long time we will be returning to see how it has grown.
We will be watering, weeding and doing some general tidying up so that the space can be enjoyed.
Get signed up and join us in celebrating the glorious return of the GROUPS.
18:15 - 18:30 Meet and warm up
18:30 - 19:00 Active travel to task
19:00 - 19:30 Oasis Task
19:30 - 20:00 Actvie travel back
20:00 - Possible drinks?
On a scorcher of a Saturday two goodgym members met up to help out at Rumney Partnership Hub / Hyb Partneriaeth Tredelerch. We have been running to help in the community gardens here for a few years now (albeit sporadically) but like most things in the various lockdowns, it in need of some love and attention. Aren't we all!
Our mission today was to clear the three raised beds of the overgrown and unwanted plants.
Can our two intrepid goodgymers get it done?
You bedder believe it!
It has been a long time since Charlotte and Michael has seen each other, so there was plenty to catch up on and chat about. A selection of the topics from today - Who should have won the Eurovision (yes it's still being talked about), our favourite karaoke songs, being vegan, quick dinners / snacks for when you can't be bothered to spend all that time cooking and of course the return of group runs.
Gloves on - Game on
At first the large 'weeds' were removed by hand, and this turned out to be hard work and some great exercise. With the music keeping us going from Michael's phone we turned to tools for the next part which was getting out the roots. Tooled up we continued with the hard forking work, as soil was thrown around trying to get the task complete in time.
Finally it was time to head off, who knew Charlotte and Michael would end up in bed together?
The next time you see Charlotte, they might be wearing black instead of red. They've completed 50 good deeds with GoodGym and have earnt their black t-shirt. Give them a nod when you next see them.
Finally, the sunshine had emerged and on a bright, crisp autumnal day, we met at the Global Gardens community allotment. After a warm welcome by Poppy, we headed to clear an area of overgrowth. The request was to clear the bramble and dig up some of the emerging roots to remove any trip hazards.
We split into two groups and made good progress in no time at all. Once we had distinguished between the roots of the giant tree and the brambles, we were on a roll! We found some interesting buried treasure whilst digging - a big patch of carpet, some corrugated plastic roofing, and a large iron bar. We also plucked up the courage to open a neglected bin bag, relieved to discover some soil rather than anything sinister!
As we started packing up the tools, the cheery sound of more GoodGymmers could be heard. Darren, Mikey and Nathan had popped in en route. The reason for their visit? It was Charlotte's 50th good deed! It only remained for Ellen to present the vintage '50' badge and a round of applause - well done Charlotte! Now head straight home to order your new t-shirt!
It was now time to wrap up and we all headed at an appropriate social distance in different directions after some much needed fresh air and GoodGym cheer.
With storm Alex forecasted, the task at Global Gardens seemed a bit daunting for a Saturday morning. However, this was not going to put 6 super keen Goodgym runners off. There was work to be done, and as always, Poppy was there to greet the runners with her usual friendly smile.
She soon put the runners to work, offering gloves and secateurs, pointing the workers in the right direction. The task at hand was to clear some brambles to make way for a children’s play area. They had already started clearing... but there was quite a bit left to do. This was going to keep the runners busy for a while!
Whilst chatting about this and that, everyone got to work. Cutting, ripping, pulling and stomping- this was not going to be easy. It was a very prickly situation. Some of the runners also set about helping Poppy with digging a hole for a water container. This was going to store water for a new space they had been working on over the last year.
An hour and a half later, and the runners had managed to clear a large space. Of course, there was more to do, but for now, the job was done and it was time to head off. Until next time.....
Last Saturday, 8 GoodGym runners met at the Shree Kutchi Leva Patel Samaj Community Centre in Cardiff, where they helped the wonderful Food for Life Wales organisation.
If you're not familiar with them, Food for Life Wales seeks to ensure that no one in South Wales goes hungry or is malnourished. They have been active in the South Wales region for over 20 years, and since lockdown started in March 2020, they have distributed over 75,000 meals to the vulnerable, the isolated and key workers in over 15 hospitals and 20 GPs surgeries across 3 health boards - WOWZA!!!
We had runners who had not helped out at FFL previously, so FFL volunteer Sophie gave us a brief introduction on what the organisation does, and what the task was for the morning. We started out with dessert (love THAT idea!) - cutting up chocolate tray cakes into small squares and then packing them up into bags, to add to meal delivery bags. I can not think of a better way to start a volunteer shift!
Once all the cake was packed up, we moved on to filling take-away style containers with the best smelling dahl, with lovely fluffy rice with veg. All I've got say is - lucky recipients of these meals! I smelled gorgeous and it was! - all volunteers were given left over containers to take home (mine being quickly devoured as soon as I got home).
When we were through, we helped clean up - that rice gets everywhere! Wiping down tables, hoovering the floor, and a final mop - even helping with the washing up! - were all undertaken by our GG vols on the day.
As usual it was a pRICEless opportunity to help out a hugely worthwhile organisation to support those in our communities who need it most. Thanks Food for Life Wales and thanks GoodGym volunteers!