North West Regional College’s proud ‘losers’

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Brian Glen is a tutor at the North West Regional College at Springtown, Londonderry.

Before Christmas he came up with the idea of bringing together a group of colleagues to find out who would be the “Biggest Loser.” At first his fellow tutors and staff thought he had not to look too far to find this with such a bizarre idea. But eventually he convinced them that losing weight over a period of two or three months would not only be healthy coming up to Christmas but also a good opportunity to raise much needed cash for the Northern Ireland Children’s Hospice.

Northern Ireland Children’s Hospice offers support to families throughout Northern Ireland and through its Hospice at Home Service particularly in Londonderry and the North West. Families of children with life threatening conditions can receive support at home or also through the Children’s Hospice at Horizon House, just outside Belfast.

As a result of the efforts of staff at the North West Regional College in Springtown, not only did larger bellies disappear but sausage rolls, sausages and a range of deserts gradually were replaced by salads and fruit as the drive increased to see who would lose the most weight.

No one, to this day, knows the starting weights of those involved, except the monitor of the venture and there have been undertakings that no one will ever know.

However what is known is that Didi Semple, one of the tutors, is now the “Biggest Loser” as a result of losing the most weight and he is not shy about letting everyone know this. Pound for pound, the “Bunch of Losers”, as they are now known, reached the target collectively of losing 260 pounds in weight and raising the equivalent, £260, in cash for the Children’s Hospice. A very welcome contribution to the Children’s Hospice’s work.

Pictured are some of the twenty five staff (including organiser Brian Glen – back right) who are part of the “Bunch of Losers” who took part in this novel fundraising idea. At the front is the “Big Loser” himself, Didi Semple presenting the proceeds from the collective diet to Teresa Mc Keever, Manager Northern Ireland Children’s Hospice Shops, Londonderry.