A fantastic post-multi-task time was had by all at our new Bristol Saturday home, the Mud Dock café who'd not only reserved us a huge table but also included festive crackers that seemed to contain a surprising number of ginger-beer-swilling scorpions.
Happy Christmas, all!
Immense! A new Saturday record of 40 Goodym'ers turned up for our bonus Christmas Eve Eve run today.
Extra special thanks to our Cardiff and Bath friends for coming all the way over to join us today - it was lovely to have so many members of our GG West family over for Christmas. We should definitely meet up more often next year!
The original plan was to help out at the Christmas shelter, but they had been so well served by volunteers during the week that they really only needed a handful of people today. So rather than put all those good deeds to waste we split into 6 groups and spread out around Bristol. (Some of the details and photos may be a little sketchy for now - the group leaders are welcome to add to their sections as they see fit!).
Time fliers pie as Charlie out reaches herself to all points central
Charlie led her group of runners around central Bristol, distributing fliers from the Christmas shelter to anyone sleeping rough on the streets. Each flier was accompanied with the offer of a mince pie, sadly without cream though.
Lisa and Graham pushing the envelope to reach All Hallows Church
Lisa and Graham kindly took on delivery of a bunch of shelter fliers to All Hallows Church in Lawrence Hill meaning that if you were to run the whole perimeter covered by our groups today you would have been taking on a 14 km run around Bristol (see photos)
Dave turns over a new leaflet at Southville
Dave's gang headed out to Southville to place GG mission leaflets at cafes and shops along North Street. The hope is that this will mean lots more elderly people will find out about Goodgym and we can brighten up their January and February by helping out with a bit gardening or simple jobs around the house.
On the way back they gave out a couple of fliers from the homeless shelter
Maria experiences St Peter's Hospice-tality as she helps out at the Broadmead branch
A last minute call to our friends at St Peters Hospice this week meant that we were able to set up yet another task for a group led by MariatoMtoto help out at their Broadmead branch.
Matterhorn goes native-ity in epic 9K to St Albans church
Of course it had to be our very own ultra-running Matt (check out his new badge) leading the longest run today out to St Albans church in Westbury. This task to set up the Church for Christmas (including a nativity scene) proved very popular, especially when the possibility of some mulled wine was discussed.
Saving Private Room Paul to take a group to the shelter
And finally yours truly took a group out to the shelter itself where a couple of us helped out around the kitchen while the rest of us attempted to re-organise the dormitory and pass a very important message about a potential flood back from the Quakers meeting hall. Thanks to Alex once again for helping out during my more scatterbrain moments.
200 Good Deeds!
Thanks to all my group leaders and photographers. And last but not least, huge congratulations to Richard for hitting 200 good deeds today. He's too modest to make a big thing out of this, but I think everyone at GG Bristol values his kindness and loyalty - and of course enjoyed his fabulous Canal Run earlier this month!
Happy Christmas everyone - this is now genuinely the very last group run before Christmas, see you in the New Year!
Saturday - we've LOADS of us signed up to the task. I'm in Mud Dock at the moment, they don't normally do bookings on Saturdays BUT would do us a Christmas Eats after the task WITH CRACKERS! We'll need to pre-order, breakfast or lunch menu. Who fancies it? 😀 Here's the menu Here's the pre-order spreadsheet - we need the info by Friday lunchtime:
ALL WELCOME - WHETHER YOU'RE A GOODGYM BRISTOL REGULAR, FIRST TIMER ... OR JUST THINKING ABOUT JOINING GOODGYM AND WANT TO FIND OUT WHAT WE'RE LIKE!
On the first Tuesday of every month we head off to a local restaurant after our group run. This month, we're heading to Bambalan who have amazingly eschewed the usual Christmas deposit required in December and allowed us to use the regular menu instead of the more expensive Christmas one!
Menu here: https://bambalan.co.uk/#food
We typically head over from Vivo as soon as the run finishes so you can either walk on over with us or meet us at the restaurant at 8:30.
Please sign up here if you would like to come so I can give the restaurant an estimate on numbers.
Come along and let's toast to what has been an incredible 2017 for GoodGym!
Caring at Christmas has been running for 30 years and has helped 1000s of guests over that time. In 2016 the project welcomed around 250 guests each day, providing 60 beds and serving 2,900 hot meals over 9 days (plus 3,000 sandwiches!). This was made possible by up to 1000 local people volunteering their time, and donating clothing, food and money.
We will be helping to convert the existing 365 night shelter so that it is ready to accept the first guests for the Christmas week. Ordinarily Goodgym group runs stop for a couple of weeks over the Christmas period, but this is a special opportunity to help out a really important Bristol project.
The shelter have been in touch in the last few days to report that they have had a large number of volunteers in recently so it may be that they can in fact only occupy 10-15 runners in the shelter itself. For the rest of us:
The shelter would like to distribute some flyers publicising the shelter and detailing the opening times etc to anyone who may be sleeping rough. A few of us should be able to divide into small groups and take these around central Bristol (maybe with a mince pie or two) so that as many people as possible have a chance to benefit from the food and beds that are being offered.
We have had a request from a local church to help them decorate and tidy up ready for the Christmas services. This normally takes them ages, so would be a huge help to them and there is a rumour that there may even be some mulled wine on offer. This is a longer run option at 3.5k each way but could work out as a nice bit of pre-Christmas exercise.
St Peter's Hospice have asked for a few people to help out at their Broadmead branch so they can cope with the last of the Christmas rush
And finally, we have a batch of GG mission leaflets that could be distributed to local cafes, restaurants etc so we can try and reach even more people to spread a little light in those first dark and lonely weeks of January and February.
We'll be meeting at the Mud Dock - where you are welcome to store any bags. We have a table booked for Eats afterwards - please sign up and there's also the link to pre-order your food by Friday lunchtime.
East Bristol food bank aim to provide three days’ nutritionally balanced emergency food and support to local people who are referred to them in crisis. They are part of a nationwide network of food banks, supported by The Trussell Trust, working to combat poverty and hunger across the UK.
We will be helping to weigh and sort donations at their storage center so they are ready for distribution to the individual collection points.
Couldn't resist putting up the photo from our last visit, but there is no fancy dress this time :)
The run is about 2.5k each way (5k in total) and we'll be back at Vivo by 8pm. The lovely people at Vivo let us use their changing rooms so just remember to bring a padlock if you would like to leave anything there while we are out
Ciara has done 10 good deeds. They are a trusted GoodGym runner and are now eligible to join their local TaskForce.