A South Derbyshire-based charity has received a £6,500 cash boost thanks to a 92-mile walk completed by staff at an insurance firm.
Me & Dee, run by Ticknall-based Maria Hanson, provides holidays in Mablethorpe for children with life-limiting illnesses and members of the armed forces who have been injured in action.
Thanks to Derby-based Franklands Insurance, the charity will start 2018 on a high, after eight members of staff walked an incredible 92 miles in two-and-a-half days.
Six walkers and a support team of two covered more than 38 miles on Friday and again on Saturday, with the final walk on Sunday.
Once the group arrived in Mablethorpe, a welcoming committee met the walkers and helped dress their battered feet and blisters.
As this event was named Franklands to the Sea for Me & Dee, the team was not satisfied with just reaching Mablethorpe, and insisted on paddling in the sea – even though the tide was far out.
Ms Hanson said: "It would be impossible in a simple thank you to ever demonstrate what this means. As you have often heard me say, it is not just about the money for Me & Dee, it is the things that people do, to reflect their belief in both myself and the charity and what we do for those facing such short and uncertain futures, and members of the armed forces with life-threatening injuries from their time in action.
"There will be changes again to Me & Dee next year as my health declines; I still won't put more than five per cent to admin which means no fund-raiser, no events person, only part-time admin help for a charity which runs seven days a week.
There are four departments to run - from the fund-raising and events, and the incredible amount of hours spent with each family going on holiday around their deep medical and psychological issues, to the office and the tons of paperwork to make the charity work, to promotion and attending events.
"The money raised has taken off a huge amount of stress for 2018. We usually start each year with an almost zero bank balance and the stress is high, but this, this is like a miracle.
"I don't know where you go in your head, really, to find enough thanks for a small group of people who became so passionate following my presentation to them, to embark on a 92-mile walk to raise as much money as possible.
"As always, I can't take and not give, and have called in the office with cakes and treats and built up a great rapport with the team. We joined them on the first night of the walk for hugs and to boost morale and met them in Mablethorpe which they said helped enormously.
"Thank you can never be a big enough word; my appreciation is not just for their money, but their belief in Me & Dee is very deep. Many smiles and memories to be created by them for 2018 and keeping the Me & Dee charity going."
A spokesman for Franklands Insurance said: "Maria is truly an amazing, selfless lady who inspired us to want to do something bigger to help raise funds for the Me & Dee charity.
"When someone in the office suggested we do a charity walk from Derby to Mablethorpe there was seven of us that were prepared to take up the challenge.
"A few practice walks were done before we committed ourselves to the challenge, but the thought of Maria and what she does for others did make the odd blister seem like nothing."
The insurance firm can be sponsored here