More than 3,500 people formed a human rainbow as they were covered with paints to raise thousands for Bluebell Wood Children’s Hospice.
Participants in the Colour Dash at Rother Valley Country Park ran, jogged and walked round the 5km course to raise money for South Yorkshire’s only children’s hospice on Saturday.
The runners, including Bluebell Wood volunteers, supporters, staff and families and friends of loved ones supported by the hospice, were showered with vibrantly coloured paint at each kilometre point.
One of the runners was Gareth Mayor, whose eight-month-old daughter Elsa died at Bluebell Wood in April 2015 after being diagnosed with Spinal Muscular Atrophy Type One earlier in the year.
Gareth, his wife Charlotte and their daughter Olivia, from Wickersley, ran the race with 48 of their friends and family.
Gareth said: “After Elsa passed away, the Bluebell Wood team was amazing. We knew nothing about what to do, and the staff helped.
“Elsa lit up our lives. Everyone taking part in the Colour Dash is helping to light up other children’s lives at Bluebell Wood and in their own homes. The Colour Dash is a fabulous fun day that represents everything about Bluebell Wood – fun, love, laughter, family and dedication to our children.
“For a family like ours that has a child who passed away, Bluebell Wood’s a support system that you wouldn’t get anywhere else. Not everyone may have, or know, a child who comes here, but everyone here today is here for them.”
Jo Berry, Events Fundraiser at Bluebell Wood, said: “The response to this, our third Colour Dash, has been overwhelming, making it our biggest and best yet. We are really grateful that so many people came together to join the fun and show their support for Bluebell Wood. Without it, we wouldn’t be able to keep our doors open.”
Bluebell Wood’s specialist care team offers services for the families including respite care, day care and hospice at home.
The hospice, on King Street, needs to raise £4million a year to keep going.