Our friends at SeaChange Retreats recently completed their first full year in action, and we couldn’t be more stoked for them!
Here at Newquay Activity Centre we are the sponsor of the retreats and supply them with free kit, use of our centre and general support to help the retreats run smoothly. We believe in their cause and think they are an inspiring company, so we are thrilled to have been involved and can’t wait to continue working with them in the future.
If you aren’t familiar with them, SeaChange are a company who run surf and wellbeing retreats for those whose lives have been impacted by cancer. Through bespoke retreats run by professionals in their field, SeaChange retreats are free of charge, funded by grants and donations. Through their enriching, cleverly planned out and medically certified weekends, participants are given the opportunity to take time for themselves- to strengthen physically and emotionally; to feel restored and nourished; and to build connections with others with similar experiences.
Here’s a round up of their exciting first year.
Despite the challenges of the pandemic, SeaChange were still able to successfully deliver six retreats, 4 of these for adults recovering after cancer, 1 for families and carers of adults impacted by cancer and 1 for adults living with a diagnosis of incurable cancer. In total they were able to welcome 40 people to the retreats, free of charge thanks to generous grant funding and donations. It was amazing to invite the participants to our centre in Newquay and assist SeaChange in delivering these retreats to the people who needed them.
SeaChange were overjoyed with the success of these retreats. “It has been an incredible year, and we feel so honoured to have had so many people step out of their comfort zones and join us. Participants have laughed and cried; shared anger, fear and despair; found friendship, connection and belonging; reclaimed joy and hope; and shared surf stoke and yoga zen. We couldn’t have asked for more”.
They kindly shared some testimonials from participants with us, and we were touched by the positive effects that the retreats have had on the attendees. Here’s a selection:
“I don’t really know where to start. The weekend was exactly what I needed without realising how much I needed it. There was so much joy and happiness and hope that life can be good again. I don’t think I had felt that light in a long time. The surf, sea, dance, yoga was all incredible”. – Recovering After Cancer Retreat, October 2021
“A healing therapeutic experience that fills the heart with joy and a feeling of connectedness with other people who have been through the same as you. Life-giving- thank you!” – Recovering After Cancer Retreat, August 2021
“To be in a safe, non judgemental space, with like minded people who are going through their own journeys and battles was priceless…. Loved, loved, loved the surf lesson and wild swimming- pushing myself to try something new. I can’t recommend this enough to anyone living with, surviving from or supporting someone with cancer”. – Living With Cancer retreat, September 2021
Growing and expanding
SeaChange also told us about the wonderful community of volunteers, fundraisers and supporters that they are developing. We are so proud to have been part of this and to have helped them achieve these incredible results this year!
They have had many participants and volunteers who have offered to share their expertise and experiences, in a way of ‘giving back’ to support them going forward.
Based on this, they are starting to compile a mini database, so that if / when they are in need of extra skills, they have people to get in touch with. If you feel like you have skills you would like to share with them, from marketing, to legal, to continued water support, social media, surf coaching, wellbeing activities…. all are welcome, just drop them an email at email@example.com.
There is absolutely no obligation to help if they do reach out, but if you do happen to have some tips, they would be incredibly grateful.
Fundraising and looking ahead for 2022
Thanks to the National Lottery, NatWest Bank and our Crowdfunder campaign, SeaChange were able to offer all 2021 retreats to participants for free. They would really love to continue this, but they will require further funding to be able to do so. They are applying for further fundraising grants to support their 2022 retreats, but if anyone is up for fundraising for them or has any further fundraising ideas, don’t hesitate to get in touch with them! Any little help is appreciated and goes a long way in allowing them to offer these life-changing retreats.
Collection Pot is a great online platform that you can use for this, as kindly demonstrated by Sharon, one of their participants, who completed a Swimathon for them earlier this year.
If you have any fundraising ideas, get in touch with us or SeaChange directly to chat.
We are super excited to continue working with SeaChange in 2022, hopefully making a difference to the lives of more people affected by cancer and sharing our love for the ocean with them. A massive congratulations to them for the success of their first year, and here’s to more amazing retreats in 2022!
Find out more about SeaChange Retreats