Great North Swim: Leeds palliative care nurse set to take the plunge in fundraising efforts to support Headingley hospice

A nurse from Leeds is set to take on two tough charity challenges to raise vital funds for the Headingley hospice where she works.

By Alex Grant
Friday, 27th May 2022, 11:45 am

Hannah Wilson, 41, who works as a Community Palliative Care Nurse Specialist at Sue Ryder Wheatfields Hospice in Headingley, is kicking off her fundraising by taking the plunge at the Great North Swim in Windermere next month.

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After braving the one-mile cold water swimming challenge, the mother-of-two then plans to pull on her trainers to take on the world famous Great North Run in September - the fourth time she will have competed in it.

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Hannah Wilson, 41, works as a Community Palliative Care Nurse Specialist at Sue Ryder Wheatfields Hospice in Headingley.

Hannah’s double fundraising challenge follows similar efforts in 2021, when she completed both events alongside friends and colleagues from Sue Ryder Wheatfields Hospice to celebrate her 40th birthday.

In total over £3,000 was raised for the hospice, which provides expert palliative care and support to people across Leeds who are living with a life-limiting condition, as well as supporting their families.

“I have decided to do the Great North Swim and Great North Run again this year as I really enjoyed them. There was a great atmosphere at both, and the swim was something new for me after getting really into open water swimming during lockdown. I was also exceptionally pleased with how generous people were with donations." Hannah said.

“I’m really keen to improve on both my times and I am trying to train whenever I can. I went for a swim the other day and managed a one-mile crawl, which was the first mile I have swum since this time last year.”

For Hannah, who has been part of the Wheatfields community team for seven years supporting patients at home in the community, it is a cause close to her heart.

“My first experience in palliative care was as a student nurse, in 2004, I knew then that it was an area that I was passionate about." she said.

"Since qualifying, I have worked in cancer care and palliative care for 15 years and I think all my previous experience was leading up to this role at Wheatfields. I love my job, it is such a privileged and rewarding role, supporting individuals and their families facing a life-limiting illness.

“I choose to fundraise for Wheatfields as I support it with a passion, both inside and outside of work.”

Kirsty Christmas, Community Fundraising Manager, said: “We’re completely in awe of Hannah for not only doing such an amazing job in supporting our patients and their families during the most difficult time of their lives, but then going above and beyond to fundraise for the hospice outside of work. We’re so grateful for her support.

“We still have a few charity places available for people to take on the Great North Swim and Great North Run for Sue Ryder Wheatfields Hospice and we would love to hear from anyone who would like to challenge themselves and give it a go.”