THROUGHOUT the coronavirus pandemic, communities and individuals have come together to care for those in need in St Helens and across the nation.

Charities in particular have suffered, with many starting fundraising pages in an effort to keep them going.

One such charity left in a difficult financial situation is Willowbrook Hospice who have had to rely on the kindness of others to survive the Covid-19 lockdown as all their events were cancelled.

Many have launched their own fundraising efforts for Willowbrook, and one of the most inspiring is 65-year-old Donald Quinn from Parr who lives with COPD.

COPD, or chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, is a progressive disease that makes it hard to breathe, which can get worse over time. COPD can cause coughing that produces large amounts of mucus, wheezing, shortness of breath, chest tightness, and other symptoms.

But despite his limitations, Donald set himself the challenge of walking 26 miles over 26 days for Willowbrook, inspired by the efforts of 100 year old Captain Tom Moore who raised millions for the NHS.

Rain or shine Donald went for his walk around The Duckeries each day for a month, and has now raised £550 for Willowbrook Hospice.

He’s hoping his story can inspire others to fundraise for charities and causes in our community.

Donald said: “I was inspired by Captain Tom really, I don’t have a garden and even though I’m self isolating I need to exercise so it made sense to do a socially distant walk each day in The Duckeries as I don’t live far from there.

“Rainy, windy, sunny or whatever, I went out there each day and did a mile a day.

“I am pleased with myself, I can look back at this strange time in our lives and know that despite my limitations I did something to help and I’m happy with that.

“I’ve enjoyed the walking so much that I now do it just for fun, I keep pushing myself so it’s been a good thing for me and Willowbrook.

“Plus my son has now set himself a fundraising challenge after seeing me do this, which is a good feeling.”

n To donate to Donald’s fundraising page go to