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Generous students raise the bar – again

L-R: James Bodin (crouching), Cub Llewelyn-Davies, William Hampshire, Tom Pettinger, Louise Gillgan, Hollie Foster, union president Cat Redding, vice president sports Richard Glover, vice president welfare & community Mario Oliveros, and vice president activities Roxanna Negru

The University of Portsmouth Students’ Union has raised a record £142,295 for charity in the past year, well above their £100,000 target and nearly double their previous year’s total.

Student-led fundraising group RAG – Raising and Giving – raised £119,692.64 and the remainder was raised by more than 14 sports clubs and societies which ran charity events through the 2012-13 academic year.

Through RAG, students have been on adventures across the globe, from climbing Mount Kilimanjaro and trekking the Inca Trail in Peru, to cycling from London to Paris, and driving a scrapheap car to Bratislava in Slovakia.

Hollie Foster, RAG chair 2012-13, said: “The 2013 RAG total is a testament to the hard work and dedication of Portsmouth students. They have gone above and beyond to far exceed this year’s target.”

The Students’ Union continues to raise the bar every year. In 2009-10 they raised £7,976, followed by £11,696 in 2010-11. In 2011-12 they raised more than £73,000 and this year almost doubled that.

The Helen Stevens of the Epilepsy Society, which was one of the many beneficiaries, said: “We are so grateful for the hard work and support from University of Portsmouth students this year, who have been fundraising towards their Inca Trek challenge. They have done an incredible job, and have raised over £11,000 for Epilepsy Society.

“The support of the students will help us to continue with our work towards our vision of a full life for everyone affected by epilepsy.”

Other charity events in the past year include:

Over 40 students took part in “LOST” in November, which involved students leaving the union at 7am in a windowless minibus to be left in the middle of Wendover Woods, Buckinghamshire and have to hitchhike back. They raised £2,317.19 for Naomi House and Jacksplace, hospices for children and young people with life-limiting conditions.

The Union’s Rowing Club managed to break a British record by rowing 724,061 metres continuously during their 48-hour row. The 40 male and female participants rowed day and night, managing to raise £1,686.32, well above their £1,000 target for Help the Heroes and The Teenage Cancer Trust.

The Union’s men’s rugby club raised £2,680.60 this year from a series of charity rugby matches. During the summer of 2012, team player Jack Segust tragically died in an accident at a golf course and his team mates took it upon themselves to raise funds in his honour.

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