Up up and away!

Once again, our fantastic supporters have been pulling together, digging deep and making a real difference to the lives of the people we support. This year you have helped us to raise a magnificent £9.6m – which not only allows us to run our current services, but also develop much-needed services in the future.

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Sense supporters have been getting physical to raise vital funds. In June, 329 hardy trekkers marched along the ancient Ridgeway path to raise a brilliant £150,000. And at our event at the Buckinghamshire Golf Club 20 teams gave their all for Sense thanks to our partnership with NEC Display Solutions.

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Firm friends

We are also indebted to all the individuals who get stuck in at a local level – from coffee mornings to supermarket collections to teaming up with the Mary Howard Christmas Fair, and raising a festive £14,503 with the help of some great volunteers.

Steve Johns raised £2,445 for Sense in the London Marathon

“Those last few miles were tough.

But I just thought about all those people who had donated and cheered me on; about Ernie, the little boy with sight and hearing impairments I had heard so much about; about the money I would raise for such a worthwhile cause.

Eyes on the finish and giving it every last ounce of effort. I crossed the line, finger in the air and shouted “YES!” It was one of the most amazing days of my life and gave me a massive sense of achievement.

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It was great to be there and see the faces of the people who had finished, to meet the other Sense runners I’d been talking to on Facebook or Twitter. There were hugs, handshakes and a few tears.

Ernie’s mum actually joined Twitter to thank me – and I said to her it was the story of her son that inspired me to run for Sense. She actually sponsored me as well which was very humbling and made me very proud.”

Sign up for the Virgin Money London Marathon 2017

A lasting impact

The backing people give us has a real and lasting impact. Support from the Esmee Fairbairn Foundation is allowing us to reach more people with our arts and wellbeing work which helps build confidence and creativity. And big thanks to Sport England for their continuing support in developing opportunities for people who are deafblind to engage in sport – everything from climbing to kayaking.

Smiling man in climbing helmet

We are also extremely grateful to The Big Lottery Fund which has given a grant of almost £700,000 to support our much-needed work in Northern Ireland with children who are deafblind or multisensory impaired.

We have also formed some very productive partnerships, with the Department of Health supporting our work with Mencap, Scope and the National Autistic Society to ensure that people with disabilities and their families can receive healthcare that is accessible to them.

A brilliant effort

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34,565 generous donors supported Sense with a regular gift via their bank, mobile phone or payroll.

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450 brave runners raised over £833,000 in the London Marathon.

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145 kind people remembered Sense with a Gift in their Will.

First published: Thursday 22 December 2016
Updated: Friday 6 January 2017