Finance director Giuseppe Alfonso took on a host of gruelling competitive sporting challenges and fundraising activities this year in aid of a number of worthy charities, spurred on further by causes close to his heart.
Mr Alfonso decided that 2017 would be his year to “bow out in style” and retire from competitive sporting challenges for good. As a result he took on four very different but equally tough trials in order to raise money for several charities.
The first challenge was White Collar Boxing, which comprised three rounds of boxing in a ring, with a nine-week intensive training regime, during which time he lost 16 lbs in total to get fight ready. Crown Paints very generously sponsored the trophies for the challenge.
The second undertaking was the Dulux revolution, cycling just under 200 miles in two days, with a base camp, over a weekend, after which he was left making the 210-mile drive home with “aching limbs”, he added.
Mr Alfonso then took on the BTR Tour of Merseyside, running 52 miles, with six races in seven days. The challengs kicked off with a half marathon on day one and finished on the seventh day with a 12-mile run – all of which Mr Alfonso completed in seven and a half hours.
He also signed up to take part in Affric Way - a 44 mile race over 24 hours, which was unfortunately cancelled by the organisers.
Initially he was raising money for The Outward Bound Trust and a local hospice, Wirral St. Johns Hospice. However just before undertaking the Dulux Revolution, Mr Alfonso’s wife, Cathy, was diagnosed with bowel cancer.
“Whilst undergoing her treatment, she accessed and received wonderful care from a number of charities, including Maggie’s, MacMillan Nurses, Wirral Holistic and The Cancer Care Centre at Clatterbridge, the charity arm of the NHS here at Clatterbridge hospital,” explained Mr Alfonso, adding that his wife asked that he do something for those organisations.
Keeping his promise, Mr Alfonso formed a crowdfunding page and, with the help of Dulux, who gave him some Dulux dogs to give away (“not the real ones!” Mr Alfonso joked). “I managed to raise another £1,200,” he said, “which took my total to £2,510 spread between the six charities.”
He continued: “Cathy has completed her treatment, which was painful, to say the least. We now await a scan in three months to see if the treatment has worked. She recognised that, whilst I have always been taking challenges on and raising money for worthy charities, she never realised that she might one day actually need them, just as many others do.”
Mr Alfonso, who has raised money for charity for years, has a wonderful philosophy, adding: “However little you give, giving something, is helping people receive care, help and support when they need it most for free. These charities provide a classless, valuable resource and those that put themselves through ‘temporary pain’ in these challenges, whether it is being punched or getting saddle sore, is something we can do to help others less fortunate.”
You can still donate and support Mr Alfonso’s fundraising journey at http://uk.virginmoneygiving.com/GiuseppeAlfonso