Report by Julie Harrison
Calvert Lakes, run by the Calvert Trust has faced financial challenges over the past 15 months, as fundraising dried up during lockdown.
After Covid-19 left a '£1m gap in their funding' and the Trust launched an 'Emergency Bounce Back Appeal' to save its 'much-loved' specialist residential centre and accessible riding centre, near Keswick.
13-year-old Oliver Voysey, who regularly visited Calvert Lakes as part of his rehabilitation, suffered a brain injury when he was two days old causing catastrophic damage including sight loss, cerebral palsy, epilepsy, autism and learning difficulties.
To support the Appeal, he launched Oliver’s Calvert Army and took on a series of challenges, including walking on a treadmill for 13 minutes, standing independently for 13 seconds, completing a 13-minute walk and scoring 13 goals in a penalty shoot-out.
Oliver's campaign went viral after he and his parents Sarah and Gary and sister Elizabeth appeared on national television and radio.
By April, Oliver, along with efforts of other fundraisers had raised £730,000 for the appeal securing the charity’s 'immediate future'.
Sean Day, The Lake District Calvert Trust
Giles Mounsey-Heysham, Chair of Lake District Calvert Trust said, “We are all looking forward to welcoming guests back from Monday."
He added: “A very big thank you to everyone who has supported us financially and with their good wishes. Please do continue to support if you possibly can. This will ensure that we can continue to be there for our disabled visitors and their families through next winter into 2022 and beyond.”