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Walking for a good cause: A team effort for the Hummingbird Project

Being based so close to the South Downs in Brighton, we could not be better placed for a long walk in the country. Over the course of a weekend in September 2020 a group of us have set off on a 100 km walk to raise money for a local refugee charity, The Hummingbird Project.

Team Randomised Control Trails


Founded in 2015 as a grassroots community group working in the Calais refugee camp, the Hummingbird Project is now a Brighton registered charity that supports young refugees in Sussex. Running on reduced capacity and funding due to the pandemic, they are looking to raise money to increase the capacity of their ‘Be Well, Be Heard’ service. A group of Itad friends and colleagues came together with the shared ideal of contributing and making a difference. Here they share their experience.

‘You realise you have met some great people when you have been with them from dusk to dawn, your muscles ache, your feet are full of blisters, but you are still smiling at each other. Before our 100km walk, I had never thought that I could have fun with my colleagues and help a group of young refugees to feel empowered to speak up at the same time. I couldn’t be more thankful to those who have donated for the cause, have offered their time to support our walk and, of course, to my teammates’ – Giovanna

‘I have never felt such support from a group of humans as this weekend. Walkers cheering each other on and helpers meeting tired and grumpy walkers with sugar and smiles. And our discomfort wasn’t even a fraction of what the refugees coming to the UK face and I’m thankful we had a chance to try and support such an amazing cause. My final thoughts: pizza will never taste as delicious as it did in Arundel on the 13th of September 2020.’ – Pippa

‘We have received an overwhelming amount of kind support and donations for The Hummingbird Project over the last few months, thank you to everyone who has supported with their time, money and words of encouragement! With cancelled fundraising events and financial uncertainty, the pandemic has been hitting charities hard. Being able to pull together to give back during this time, even just by putting one foot in front of the other approximately 150,000 times, has made every challenging moment worthwhile. Thank you also to my amazing teammates for all the laughs and unrelenting positivity along the way.’ – Talar

Source: Itad (2020)


‘I originally wanted to participate in the 100km walk as a way of challenging myself while also raising some money for an amazing charity. It was definitely a challenge! But from the two days, I also now have a wonderful amount of memories, from countless games of word association to the many strange and delirious conversations after 10 hours on our feet. And we have raised over £3,000 so the blisters were all worth it!’ – Becka

‘Through the hardship of achy knees, agony of walking through gravel and the pain of walking with swollen feet I have experienced an unparalleled solidarity amongst some of the kindest and most attentive people I will ever meet.  The sheer determination to finish the challenge together and raise funds for such a worthy cause was brilliant. Can we do it all over again please?’ – Helio


‘The premise of our walk was that all we had to do was put one foot in front of the other, and keep on doing it until we reached 100km, but thanks to the amazing people that participated, our challenge became a way to test our limits and build our collective strength in a way that we don’t get to experience enough in our daily lives. This was truly a once in a lifetime’s experience. – Ally

‘There’s a special kind of bond that takes place between teammates 10+ hours into an endurance event. Something happens in the brain that makes conversations flow and inhibitions fly out of the window. I think it’s best for everyone’s sake that these conversations were never recorded’ – George

‘Since first discussed walking 100k in January, feelings of nervousness and excitement alternated. During the walk, the feeling of mutual support took over, everyone was making sure that we could all make it, including our supporters that brought food and motivation.  Now, that the muscle soreness and aches fade away, all that is left is to be proud of ourselves!’– Leonie

‘Gruelling, ghastly, glorious. I had the hair-brained idea to organise this challenge as a way to up my fitness and get to know my lovely colleagues better. There’s no team building quite like it. I love every one of you and I am so proud of us all!’ – Rebecca

‘Even in my darkest moments, I was always having fun’ – Gregg