A fundraising campaign has been launched by Virgin Money to help injured servicemen and women adapt to life back on Civvy Street.
The bank is a main sponsor of the South Pole Allied Challenge 2013, the third expedition staged by Walking with the Wounded to raise funds for the retraining of wounded servicemen and women in finding new careers outside the military.
The trek which began this month involves three teams of wounded servicemen and women embarking on a walk to the South Pole.
Although the race element of the trek was called off for safety reasons, the teams are continuing to their destination. They have so far endured temperatures as low as minus 45 degrees Celsius and 50mph winds as they pull their 70kg sleds towards the southernmost point on the globe.
As part of the challenge, the bank has launched its campaign in its North East stores to enable customers and members of the public to get involved and support the charity.
Stores taking part include Cramlington, Gateshead, Low Fell, Washington, Hexham, Morpeth, Fowler Street and Prince Edward Road in South Shields, Market Street and Northumberland Street and Gosforth in Newcastle and Whitley Bay.
More than £75,000 has already been raised through Virgin Money Giving, the official fundraising partner for Walking with the Wounded.
And now customers and members of the public can buy a special WWTW teddy, wristband or sponsoring a kilometre of the trek.
Paul Lloyd, marketing director at Virgin Money said: “We are delighted that Virgin Money Giving is the official fundraising partner for Walking with the Wounded and we hope our involvement will generate a significant boost in funds for the charity. To have raised more than £52,000 before the race even started was really encouraging, and long may it continue. What these teams are doing is truly inspirational, so anyone who wants to get involved and support their efforts should visit our South Pole Challenge hub at Virgin Money Giving.
“It contains lots of ideas of how to get involved and help raise even more money.
“Simple ideas like organising a sponsored walk whilst the teams undertake their trek can be effective fundraisers as well as good fun.”