Bereaved husband pulls himself out of bed to raise £10,000 for Kenton Hospice

Desi ramblers team raised money for St Luke's Hospice

Desi ramblers team raised money for St Luke's Hospice - Credit: Archant

A bereaved husband has raised more than £10,000 for a Kenton hospice adding another £2,000 after joining fellow ramblers from a local walking club.

Virji Hirani, with his late wife Amarben, raised £10,000 for St Luke's Hospice

Virji Hirani, with his late wife Amarben, raised £10,000 for St Luke's Hospice - Credit: Archant

Virji Hirani, of Douglas Avenue, Wembley, was inspired to fundraise for St Luke's Hospice after his beloved wife of 32 years Amarben died in December 2017.

Nurses from the Kenton Grange charity were at his wife's bedside during her final hours, also providing comfort to him, having given her care at home.

Unable to get out of bed after she died and lacking motivation, a friend encouraged the 53-year-old to join Desi Ramblers - a local walking club formed five years ago for communities in Brent, Harrow and Barnet.

The group, set up to help people keep a healthy mind and body, make friends, and protect the environment, now has 240 members who meet for a walk every Sunday.

Desi ramblers team raised money for St Luke's Hospice

Desi ramblers team raised money for St Luke's Hospice - Credit: Archant


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"The friendships I began to build while walking helped me overcome my inertia," said Virji, who has two sons. "I wanted to get up out of bed to spend time with new friends. Sharing my story with others really helped me, and made me realise I wasn't alone and other people have their own losses to deal with as well."

In 2017 he and his family set up a Just Giving get in memory of Amarben raising more than £10,000 for the charity.

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During this May bank holiday he and fellow ramblers walked 96 miles over four days along the West Highland Way in Scotland, raising more than £30,000 for St Luke's Hospice and Keech Hospice which will be split 50/50.

Virji was able to raise a further £2,000 towards that total.

"I was delighted Desi Ramblers had chosen St Luke's and I was keen to help raise funds for both the charities in memory of Amarben," he said. "My family and I are grateful for the support and care received by St Luke's and we want other local families to be able to benefit from the same services we did.

Since 2014 the Desi Ramblers have raised an incredible £175,000 for charities by organising annual trekking challenges around the UK.

To support Virji's fundraising for St Luke's Hospice visit uk.virginmoneygiving.com/VirjiHirani2

To join Desi Ramblers, which is free email rahul@houseofharia.com

To find out more about St Luke's visit stlukes-hospice.org.

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