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The 565 Challenge: supporting three charities which are in urgent need


At this difficult time, we wanted to support three causes very close to Sovereign which are in urgent need. Through the 565 Challenge, the team are collectively looking to cover 565 miles - or more - by walking, running, cycling OR travelling by any non-motorised means… during 15-22 June 2020. We also hope to have a lot of fun on the way!

Why 565 miles?

We wanted to do something that connected ‘distance and tenacity’, to reflect both the spirit of the London marathon which the charities rely on, and the capabilities of the penguin, our emblem, which can certainly go the distance on land and sea. Emperor penguins can dive as deep as 565 metres - deeper than any other bird!

Individual and shared team challenges include:

  • A Zwift duo attempting to cover 565km
  • Running – in full cricket kit – from the Oval to Lords, the equivalent of the highest test match innings (400 by Brian Lara in 2004 which). At 22 yards each it’s the equivalent of 8,800 yards or 8km.
  • Walking and running 5.65 mile and 56.5km and lots of other distances
  • Team member and Olympic Skeet athlete who has represented England will be shooting 565 shotgun cartridges
  • A 30km row
  • A 565 metre space hopper dash!

Our Charities

The Brain & Spine Foundation: Our team member Emma was due to run the London Marathon this year for the Foundation which provides information and specialist support for anyone affected by a neurological problem. In 2011, Emma in fact suffered a brain haemorrhage, something that runs in her family. Fortunately, she made a complete recovery but her father and sister have sadly suffered longer-term consequences as a result of this condition. The charity depends on the marathon for its key source of income and is now in desperate need, so we really wanted to get behind Emma and her fundraising plans. Emma has kindly shared her experience with us here

SeeAbility: Healthcare has always been a key sector for Sovereign. SeeAbility provides specialist support, accommodation and eye care help for people with a range of learning disabilities and complex needs including autism and sight loss. The cancellation of the London Marathon and other challenge events is a real setback for SeeAbility which has been deeply affected by Covid. Learn more about their fantastic work here.

Zoological Society of London (ZSL): Our penguin connects us to wildlife conservation. Whilst many think of ZSL as London Zoo, their work is much more extensive. Not only do they care for over 20k animals across London and Whipsnade Zoos, they pioneer research in infectious disease that cross species including Covid-19, as well as running conservation projects in over 50 countries. They receive no core government funding and their cash reserves are much reduced having closed their gates on 21 March; now thankfully safely reopening 15 June. Their loss of income is crippling, threatening everything they have worked towards for almost 200 years.

Click here for our fundraising page: