Boost for top Sheffield walking group

Members of the Step Out Sheffield walking group.

Members of the Step Out Sheffield walking group.

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Members of a Sheffield walking group are striding ahead confidently after picking up a string of accolades and a fundraising boost.

Step Out Sheffield scooped two prizes at the recent Voluntary Action Sheffield ‘Make A Difference’ Awards.

The group was highly commended in the ‘Small Group – Big Impact’ and ‘Outstanding Achievement in Involving and Supporting Volunteers’ categories at a glittering ceremony held at the Cutlers’ Hall.

Step Out Sheffield has also just been named as a finalist in the innovation category at the Celebrating and Recognising Volunteers Awards run by The Ramblers.

And there was more good news recently as the group has been officially accredited by the Walking for Health scheme.

Run by The Ramblers and MacMillan Cancer Support, the accreditation means GPs and health professionals can refer patients to the group they feel would benefit from extra exercise.

And to top it all off the group has just received the news that it has been successful in its application for funding from the National Lottery Fund.

The amount was not disclosed but the sum will help to pay for running costs in 2017 and 18.

Sue Lee, scheme coordinator for Step Out Sheffield, said: “I think these achievements are unprecedented and should be celebrated.

“We’re delighted our short walks have been accredited by Walking for Health.

“Our volunteer walk leaders’ help all sorts of people to enjoy the many health benefits that regular walking brings, providing support every step of the way.

“Our walkers have a great deal of fun, making new friends and getting to know their local area.

“Many of us know we should be more active, so why not join in and let us welcome you along to our next walk.”

The voluntary organisation is a self-managed scheme delivering 24 health walks each week across the city, marshalled by more than 100 trained leaders and offering people of all abilities a chance to make new friends while boosting their fitness.

Health walks differ from other walks and rambles in that they target people with physical and mental health problems and those who would otherwise suffer from social isolation. They are regular, short walks, delivered at a speed comfortable to the walker. For more information about Step Out Sheffield visit www.healthwalksinsheffield.btck.co.uk

To vote for the group to win in the innovation category at The Ramblers’ Celebrating and Recognising Volunteers Awards visit

www.ramblers.org and go to volunteer-zone, then click on Volunteer Awards 2017.