Are you up to the NSPCC’s HACK challenge?

Launching this year’s NSPCC Hack (Hike Against Cruelty to Kids) in association with SPAR in the heart of the Mourne Mountains is local beauty, Jenny Curran, who is helping the NSPCC call on all walking novices or enthusiasts to put their best foot forward and raise vital funds for the charity.

Launching the HACK - Jenny Curran Paddy Doody (SPAR) and Clare Galbraith (NSPCC)

Taking place on Saturday 15th September 2012 the challenge offers trekkers of all abilities the chance to take in some of the most dramatic scenery and breathtaking views, whilst raising money for this very worthwhile charity. This year, walkers are offered either a 12 or 20 mile route, dependant on their ability and how adventurous they are feeling!

Karen Walker, NSPCC community fundraising manager, said: “Training for the HACK is a great way to start a keep fit campaign and taking part is an amazing challenge and experience. The HACK will be a fabulous day out in the great outdoors and a valuable opportunity to help the NSPCC raise money to support its projects and services in Northern Ireland and across the UK.  Why not sign up with a group of friends or colleagues and make it a real team challenge.”

Now in its fourth year, the NSPCC Hack is a well established event on the walking and fundraising calendar in Northern Ireland. This year, the NSPCC is delighted to welcome on board SPAR as title sponsor. SPAR has been a corporate charity partner with the NSPCC for the last 5 years, but this is the first time it will be sponsoring this challenge. A team of 17 budding walkers from Henderson Group (SPAR) took part last year and raised over £4,000, which was an incredible effort.

Paddy Doody, Sales and Marketing Director for Henderson Wholesale (SPAR) said: “SPAR already has a close relationship with the NSPCC in Northern Ireland and we are delighted to be sponsoring this local challenge. Having first-hand experience in taking part, we at SPAR are keen to get behind this event again and encourage everyone to put on their walking boots – have fun and be healthy, whilst making a difference in helping vulnerable children throughout Northern Ireland.”

The HACK challenge can be great fun, but is hard work. Both routes for the HACK are a demanding physical challenge, and the NSPCC recommends people who register, undertake some training beforehand.  Average walkers should complete the walk comfortably within 12 hours with more experienced faster walkers aiming to complete the long route within eight hours. There will be checkpoints and marshals on route, with radio contact between all checkpoints and the control centre. The terrain is very varied and the weather conditions can change quickly, so suitable walking boots, clothing and accessories, such as a rucksack, are recommended for all walkers.  Check out the training tips section on the NSPCC website for more information.

The HACK is open to people aged 18 years and over.  The registration fee is £20 for the 20 mile challenge and £10 for 12 mile challenge. For further details and online registrations and payments, please log on to or contact the Northern Ireland NSPCC Fundraising office on 028 90 351135.  Final registration date is 30 August 2012.

Once the registration is complete, entrants will receive a walker’s pack outlining their start time and giving further details of the route. Participants can then begin collecting sponsorship pledges from friends, family and colleagues.