Creggan take Great steps in club initiative

Is 30 million steps achievable by a GAA clubs members in 5 days?

Well, the answer from Kickham’s Creggan is a resounding yes. The club was about to launch its latest fundraising drive in mid-March as they aimed to become the first GAA club to organise and run its own marathon called ‘Heart & Sole’. However the launch night coincided with the COVID-19 lockdown and unfortunately, the event had to be postponed.

Like all GAA clubs, Kickham’s and its members had to readjust and rather than preparing for matches, they focused instead on helping those most in need in their community with food deliveries, local pharmacies deliveries etc and have completed several other social media challenges.

However, last week some of the club members looked at the Heart & Sole initiative again and decided to organise a steps challenge to get the local community involved in something they could all support and focus on as one of the big goals of the marathon was to help people with their mental and physical well-being.

The response was phenomenal as over 300 people signed up within 3 days to form 30 teams, mostly in family and club team groups. Some individuals recorded 50,000 steps in a single day and other’s have walked and run the equivalent of marathons around their own homes. PRO and county hurling captain, Conor McCann commented “the event has been fantastic and created a real buzz amongst the members. We have complied with all social distancing rules and Department of Health guidelines and after 5 days over 30 million steps had been taken which is just amazing. The competition is intense but so has the craic with the obligatory WhatsApp groups providing plenty of good-natured banter about how some of the steps have been achieved!”

After the two days, the 30 teams were split into 5 divisional championships with the winners announced live via a Zoom call on Saturday evening. Conor commented that whilst we would all love to be out playing and supporting our teams, the GAA has an important role to play at this time and the steps challenge has brought the community together and has provided a real sense of pride in the local community with kids from 4 to pensioners of over 70 taking part.

7 of the McAteer family, otherwise known as The Lockdown Bandits who recorded over 1.6 million steps and topped the Senior Division.

The initiative is also raising funds for the NHS charity and local food bank, both of which have helped and are continuing to help our local communities.

If anyone wishes to join the Creggan GAA club and support these worthy causes, they would be very appreciative and delighted to pass on details of how you can donate.

So there you have it… can any other club surpass the achievement of over 30 million steps in just 5 days… maybe this is something other clubs could try.

See the Participation Board with all 30 teams steps recorded after the 5 Day Step Challenge. After 2 days, the teams were split into divisional sections.

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