A team of formerly homeless people from Emmaus Leeds have donated £2,500 to St Gemma’s Hospice and Macmillan. The cheque presentation took place at the St Gemma’s Harrogate Road, Moortown hospice.

On Thursday 7th September, Emmaus companions, staff, and well-wishers from the local community gathered at St Gemma’s to celebrate the presentation. The meeting was also a chance to celebrate the life of former Emmaus Leeds companion, Steven Wall, who passed away in 2016 after a two year battle with cancer.

Emmaus Leeds companions, staff and friends raised the £2,500 in memory of their friend Steven Wall, and were keen to support St Gemma’s Hospice and Macmillan – two charities close to Steven’s heart.

As part of the presentation, attendees enjoyed a tour of the building and gardens to see how their money will help St Gemma’s. The concept of solidarity and helping others less fortunate than yourself is a central ethos of Emmaus and a motivation for the companions completing Wall’s Walking Challenge.

Fay Richardson, Senior Fundraiser at St Gemma’s Hospice, said: “I just want to say a massive thank you to Emmaus Leeds for raising this money for us, and a really well done for completing the challenge – not many people could do it. This money will go towards helping patients like Steven in the future.”

The gruelling year saw the team complete the Snowdon, Scafell Pike and Yorkshire Three Peaks legs of Wall’s Walking Challenge in 2016. The final stage of the challenge, Ben Nevis, was successfully scaled by companions, staff and friends of Emmaus Leeds on Sunday 11 June 2017.

“Ben Nevis is the best challenge I have faced.”

Richard, companion at Emmaus Leeds, said: “Ben Nevis is the best challenge I have faced. It was a hard walk in terrible conditions. Just getting to the summit was an achievement in itself with heavy fog, rain and wind. I feel very proud of myself and of everybody that accomplished this walk in Steven’s memory.”

Emmaus Leeds supports 26 formerly homeless people by providing them with a stable home and meaningful work for as long as they need it.

Donald Forrester, Chief Executive Officer of Emmaus Leeds, said: “Our community and friends of Emmaus Leeds have pulled together to achieve a fitting tribute to Steven. A lot of effort has been put in by our companions, not just on the walks themselves but also in the training walks to prepare for the challenge. I would like to salute all the people involved in this fundraising effort and give thanks to all who have donated money to Wall’s Walking Challenge.”

To support Emmaus Leeds visit www.emmaus.org.uk/leeds. For more information call 0113 248 4288 or visit Emmaus Leeds at St Mary’s Street, Leeds, LS9 7DP.