Rennie Bear Diaries
See our full list of Roadshow dates here
1 October 2016
I still can’t believe that this marked the end of our Awareness Campaign Roadshows. I have had the best summer ever helping to raise awareness of the Rennie Grove branding and services. I have made new friends, been on wonderful adventures and have realised, now more than ever, just how important it is that we continue to provide the care and support to local patients with cancer and other life-limiting illness and their families.
The day of the Wycombe Roadshow started off very foggy and it was forecast to rain for most of the day, which worried me because unfortunately I’m not allowed outside when it rains. Thankfully the rain stayed away whilst everything was set up but then the heavens opened! I had to rush inside to Iceland, the shop we were pitched up next to, who very kindly let me use their staff room to wait in.
The other Rennie Grove helpers stayed outside, getting very soggy but continued to hand out flags to all the passing boys and girls and they also encouraged some children to get involved with our community art project. The highlight of the day was when the Mayor of High Wycombe came round to say hello to everyone on the market stalls once the rain had eased off. He even had his picture taken with some of the Rennie Grove staff and volunteers!
At around 3pm the sun came out and dried up the puddles that were swamping the High Street, which meant I was allowed to come outside again! I walked up and down the street saying hello to everyone. Lots of children wanted pictures and at one point I had a queue of people waiting to say hello. I felt like Mickey Mouse at Disney World! I must remember to tell him that the next time we meet up, he will find it funny I’m sure.
Before long it was time to pack up and go home. I felt quite sad that it was the last roadshow event, but I’m sure I will be out and about at other Rennie Grove events soon!
Rennie Bear x
29 August 2016
Beaconsfield Country Fayre
It feels like forever since I last wrote in my diary! Sorry I haven’t been very present lately, I have been enjoying the lovely weather on my school holidays. Can’t believe it’s nearly time for me to go back to school. I still need to get my new shoes but it’s always a bit of a problem because I have really big feet!
Where do I even start with the Beaconsfield Country Fayre? We joined the Beaconsfield Fundraising Group side-by-side. They were fantastic at selling raffle tickets and they had some excellent prizes. I had my eye on the bicycle but I’m not sure I would have been able to fit on it anyway. We had two gazebos with our logo and branding all over them, pink and purple balloons and banners everywhere. You couldn’t miss us!
We were right next to the go-carting and climbing wall, which meant all the boys and girls would come right past us with their parents. We took this as a great opportunity to get them involved with our community art project and talk to the adults about the services we provide in the local area. I was really touched by the amount of people that came up to give donations and just said ‘I know what you do and thank you’ - it really showed that people know who we are and they remember us.
I wanted to enter the stretcher race but I wasn’t old enough for the adult team and apparently only stuffed teddy bears are allowed on the stretchers for the children’s race. So I just stood at the finish line and cheered everyone on. It was very funny to watch.
The best part about the day was that I got to hold the cutest little baby boy. He was so tiny compared to me, I was so scared I might drop him I had help to hold him up whilst we got a picture. The end of our Awareness Campaign is fast approaching, with the last roadshow taking place on the 1 October in High Wycombe. Keep an eye out for us and join us if you can.
Rennie Bear x
9 July 2016
Princes Risborough Summer Festival
We had two Roadshows to be at today. One in Amersham and one in Princes Risborough. Sadly I can’t be in two places at once, so I went to the Princes Risborough one. We are already half way through our Roadshows now. Which means half way through our Awareness Campaign to help people identify with the Rennie Grove brand and understand what we do! These Roadshows are meant to help local people make the connection between the old names of our original charities – Iain Rennie Hospice at Home and Grove House – and our name now, Rennie Grove. We have been worried that patients and supporters might be confused about the different names. We want to make sure that they know they can rely on the same high quality service that they associate with the old names. The lovely workers at Rennie Grove have been working so hard to achieve what we set out to do, so I hope it’s all paid off!
When we got there I was so excited to see that we were right opposite the bouncy castle slide! I wanted to go on it really badly, but I had the important job of handing out my flags and stickers to all the boys and girls. The bookmakers, Corals, let us pitch our big pink gazebo up outside the front of their shop. I thought this was really nice of them considering what a busy sporting weekend they had ahead of them. This event was ‘Best of British’ themed, so there was lots of red, white and blue colours everywhere. I had my picture done with some very tall ladies sporting all the British colours. They were even taller than me!
I also made friends with the emergency response team who were opposite our gazebo. They were very nice lads and helped us carry the gazebo weights back to the car when it was time to pack up. I had so much fun at this festival. The sun was shining, the atmosphere was happy and full of the shouts and laughter of children having a really good time.
We carried on with the finger painting project too. This one came out really well as all the children got their finger prints in the lines. There is getting to be quite a collection of these canvases back at Rennie Grove HQ. They look really good when they are all together.
We were right by the bands too so I had a bit of a boogie in the street with all the boys and girls and even some of the parents! Someone took a video of me dancing I think. That’s always nice and embarrassing. I think everyone had a good time today, I know I certainly did.
The next Roadshow is at the Beaconsfield Country Fayre on Bank Holiday Monday, 29 August. See you all there for more adventures!
Rennie Bear x
25 June 2016
I think I was most excited about this Roadshow because it had a Western theme. I do like to dress up. I made sure that we had enough cowboy hats for everyone to wear. No excuses! Except unfortunately my head was too big to wear one, so I made sure everyone else wore theirs at all times instead!
The pink gazebo was already set up when I got there so it was really easy to find. Brighter than all the other stands, it’s like a big shining beacon! I was happy to see that everyone was wearing their cowboy hats as I had asked them to do the day before. The weather looked a bit worrying to start off with, but it soon brightened up and actually got quite warm!
We managed to get lots of people involved with our art project. I’m a bit worried because some of the little children didn’t get their finger print in the lines of the picture but that doesn’t matter. We just want everyone to be a part of it. Even the Mayor of Tring joined in and put his fingerprint on the canvas. He is a very busy man so I didn’t bother him for a picture, but he seemed very nice. He was wearing a big necklace that shone brightly when it caught the sun and a cowboy hat in the spirit of the festival!
I made a friend today too! He was a little boy named Sammy. He was so tiny! Maybe that’s because I’m so tall. He kept following me around and giving me hugs and sweets. I can’t tell Mum how many sweeties I had because she will get cross!
We have two Roadshows on the same day in July! I’m not sure which one I will be at but one has a Rio theme and the other a best of British! How exciting!
Rennie Bear x
19 June 2016
St Albans Street Festival
After the fun I had at the Marlow Regatta Roadshow, I was more excited than ever to do the St Albans Street Festival. So excited in fact, that my teachers wrote a letter home telling my parents I wasn’t allowed to hand out the Rennie Grove flags at school anymore. It’s ok though because that meant I had more flags to give out today!
When I got there, I was sad to see we didn’t have the nice pink gazebo but I quickly got over that when I saw we were in the best spot for getting everyone involved with our community art project! The kids really liked the finger stamp idea and the parents didn’t mind because it didn’t get too messy. I can’t do it because I get the ink in my fur, so I handed out our special flags to everybody instead.
The whole place was alive with people, young and old. They were all chatting and laughing and even dancing to the music! I had a bit of a dance with a little girl who came past our stand. It was so fun but I was really scared I was going to tread on her tiny little feet!
One of the ladies who was there to talk about Rennie Grove, and what we do for the local community was asked to do a radio interview! How amazing is that? It was like she was famous. I think the station was called Radio Verulam. She told them all about how we provide palliative and end-of-life care to local patients with cancer and other life-limiting illnesses as well as to their families at no extra cost to them. I always feel so proud to be a part of Rennie Grove when I hear people spreading the word about what we do. It’s even more important too because we rely mainly on public fundraising. I know we have loads of really cool events coming up. I’m desperate to do Colour Blast: The Scramble but Mum won’t let me because the coloured powder is hard to get out of my fur apparently. We do have the Superhero fun run though at the Hemel 10k that Mum said I could do if I wanted!
Our next Roadshow is at the Tring Carnival on 25 June. I can’t wait to see what happens there! It’s a Western theme so I’m getting the cowboy outfit sorted!
Rennie Bear x
12 June 2016
Marlow Regatta Roadshow
Today was my first ever Roadshow event and I was so excited. I couldn’t wait to tell everyone there about what we do and how we used to be Iain Rennie, but we came together with Grove House in St Albans to become Rennie Grove. When I woke up, I was sad to see it was raining a lot but hoped that it would maybe clear up later. After a healthy breakfast of porridge and honey…yummy, I put on my Rennie Grove t-shirt and got ready to leave for the big event.
When I got there I helped put up the big pink gazebo! It’s brand new and everyone at Rennie Grove is really impressed with it. You can see it for miles! I like it because it matches my t-shirt. Sadly, whilst we were setting up it started to rain quite a lot. One of the ladies helping wasn’t very happy because the water kept trickling down the side of the tent, so we all decided to get nice hot cups of tea. I got a hot chocolate with marshmallows.
Thankfully the weather brightened up a bit as the morning went on and lots of boys and girls were running around, dancing to music and eating ice creams. The nice ladies helping at the Rennie Grove stall said that I could go and play and walk around, so I took my special stickers and flags and went to meet everyone!
Rennie Grove has just started a new Instagram account, so we were getting the mums and dads to put up pictures of me with #RennieBear. It felt weird at first, like I was a celebrity but it was so much fun that I soon forgot to be camera shy.
I also made a friend! Help for Heroes had their Bear friend at the event too. I may have also got into trouble with the police…only joking! But I did feel a bit scared asking them for a picture.
I had such a great day at the Marlow Town Regatta. I was very tired afterwards though. Looking forward to the next one on 19 June in St Albans. I hope I get to make lots of new friends!
Rennie Bear x