Taking the High Road

OPI joins the UK industry in raising funds to support cancer research across the globe


It’s nearly that time of year again when members of the UK office products industry will gather in the Lake District for the Climb of Life (COL) to battle the elements in the name of cancer research. Teams from across all distribution channels in our sector will work together to climb some of the highest peaks in cold winter conditions. It may not be fun, but it will be worthwhile. 

Since COL founder Graeme Chapman starting fundraising 27 years ago, over £1.1 million ($1.7 million) has been raised for a number of causes. In the last seven years, all monies have gone towards the Institute of Cancer Research (ICR), raising a total of £482,000. 

Aiming high

This year’s climb, again completely dedicated to the ICR, will as before be based in Grasmere in the Lake District and take place on Friday, 7 November. The conditions at this time of year are usually wet, cold and windy with a high risk of snow, so it will be a battle against the elements as well as cancer. Undeterred, the teams of walkers will aim to cover all the major peaks in the Lake District in just one day, so there will be some very tired bodies at the end of it. 

OPI is one of the teams – made up of Steve and Kelly Hilleard, Janet Bell, India Pride and Heike Dieckmann – scaling those mountains. With the help of all their colleagues at OPI, they are hoping to beat last year’s donations worth £19,000. 

The total raised in 2013 between all the teams taking part in the Climb of Life was £80,000, another record everybody supporting this event would love to smash this year.

As for all the teams involved, cancer research is an area very close to the heart of everybody at OPI, as most of us have somehow been touched by this illness. Very sadly, this year again a former OPI employee, Michelle Richards, lost her battle with cancer at the very young age of 34. 

So much more research, commitment and work is needed to make these sad stories a thing of the past. The ICR is one the leading laboratories in the world and works closely with other major international organisations to ensure the best results are obtained worldwide. The institute has been behind many significant breakthroughs in cancer treatment and we sincerely hope that our efforts will enable it to continue this important work. 

Your support is essential for this and we are asking you and your organisation to please support this initiative. Any sponsorship you can give will help the millions of people – often including friends and family – suffering from cancer today, and hopefully one day the ICR and similar research organisations will find a cure. 

To sponsor us please visit our Climb of Life page