2 February 2021

On the 12th of November 2020, Bowel Research UK launched its first virtual event ‘The 42,000 Steps Challenge’ in partnership with Barclays bank group. The challenge is named after the 42,000 people who every year are diagnosed with bowel cancer in the UK (the second largest cause of cancer death).

After such a difficult year for everyone and with a new lockdown in front of us, we at Bowel Research UK felt it was critical to reach out to people and encourage everyone to keep a healthy life style during the second lock down. We wanted to inspire people to keep active and eat well by having a better understanding of how extensively our gut health affects our mental health (science shows that bacteria in our gut are responsible for producing about 90% of the serotonin or ‘happy hormone’ in our body) and plays a major role in preventing terrible diseases such as bowel cancer and other chronic bowel diseases (i.e. Crohn’s disease and ulcerative colitis).

Barclays, an organisation which really values the wellbeing of its employees, immediately joined in and prompted everyone at its headquarters in London and the Barclaycard campus in Northampton to take on the challenge and walk 42,000 steps in the course of six consecutive weeks before Christmas.

The opening of the challenge was marked by the very kind intervention of The Gut Stuff team. Co-founders Alana and Lisa Macfarlane and their in-house head of nutrition are experts in the gut and the digestive system. The talk covered everything from digestive health / gut bacteria to IBS and why exercise is good for our gut.

Thanks to the outstanding effort and generosity of Barclays and its employees £4,486 was raised in support of Bowel Research UK.

Gulgun, from Barclays who helped to organise the Challenge comments:

“The 42,000 step challenge in support of Bowel Research UK was a very successful campaign as the cause touched so many of our colleagues on a personal level and increased awareness about this type of cancer.

We often find it difficult to talk about bowel-related concerns and share experiences, but this campaign has definitely opened a conversation about this topic in our organisation.

Besides we were able to encourage our colleagues to get outside and have a walk during the rather colder months of lockdown, which is crucial for physical and mental health of our colleagues. And on top of this, we were also able to raise significant amount of funding to support the amazing work of Bowel Research UK. Certainly, a very rewarding initiative!

If your company and employees would like to get involved with our 42,000 Step Challenge please do let us know and we will be happy to help you organise your staff and teams remotely.

Just send an e mail to our Fundraising Team and we’ll be in touch to help.