Local community group Dipak Dristi has, for the second year, raised a wonderful donation for Willow Wood by taking part in the Hospice organised event, the Twilight Wander.

Volunteers at the group, which translates as, ‘Light of Focus’ meet up at the Broadoak and Smallshaw Community Centre and this year raised £1,473.50, taking the total raised to over £2,000. Dipak Dristi was initially set up three years ago by Champaben Mistry following the loss of her husband. Feeling isolated and without a sense of purpose, Champaben decided to do something practical that would also help others in a similar situation and so the group came into being.

Meeting on Mondays the group provides a valuable service to the community, with activities including arts and crafts, music, dance with the aim of promoting a healthy lifestyle and wellbeing for those over 55. The initial contact between Willow Wood and Dipak Dristi was made only two days before the 2021 Midnight Wander, when assistant practitioner Billinda Dyson visited the group. Although the primary aim was to see how the Hospice and Dipak Dristi could support each other, she took information on the sponsored walk and 12 volunteers immediately signed up, raising £600 in just 48 hours.

Laura Marinelli, the organiser of the Twilight Wander said, “We were thrilled last year to meet the group at the event, and it has been wonderful in the meantime to visit each other to find out more about our aims and objectives. Sue Wicks, our departmental administrator and myself were invited to attend their Diwali celebrations recently where we were presented with the donation and had a really lovely time.

We can’t thank them enough for their support and hope we can continue this strong and very valuable relationship.”

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