May 2022: 13 DHL Supply Chain colleagues completed the Royal British Legion (RBL) Arctic Survival Challenge earlier this year and have raised over £34,000 for the charity so far.
The DHL team joined the Arctic Survival Challenge to raise funds for the RBL in its centenary year. The RBL provides vital financial, social and emotional support to service personnel, veterans and their families.
Among the DHL colleagues who took part were three veterans: Gary Woods, Transport Manager at DHL’s Gloucester warehouse; Richard Ottewell, Class One Driver at DHL’s Armthorpe site; and Sean Blamire, Asset Manager at DHL’s Engineering Department in Manchester. All three were keen to get involved in the challenge, with first-hand experience of the valuable work the RBL does.
Talking about the experience, Gary Woods said, “I have friends that would not be here today without the help and ongoing support of the Royal British Legion, so I couldn’t think of a more worthy charity to raise funds for. It was a challenging experience, but I thoroughly enjoyed it and I’m proud to have supported the RBL alongside my DHL colleagues.”
Richard Ottewell said: “I joined the challenge because the Royal British Legion helped me when I needed it most and it’s a charity that’s close to my heart. It felt great to challenge myself and do something different and exciting, especially since I’ve been quite withdrawn since leaving the armed forces. Being part of the DHL Arctic Survival team helped me to change that.”
Sean Blamire added, “the charity is very close to my heart, and so I was delighted to be a part of the Arctic challenge team and raise money to help support ex-service men and women and their families in their times of need.”
The RBL Arctic Survival Challenge 2022 saw the DHL team travel to Northern Sweden, just 150km outside the Arctic Circle, where they spent eight days testing their ability to adapt to the harsh environment and freezing cold temperatures reaching -23c. They embarked on cross-country skiing, husky sledding and a 70km snowmobile safari, while learning life-saving skills like ice fishing and fire lighting. Fuelled by ration packs, the team worked together to build overnight shelters and spent their nights taking turns to candle watch, making sure there was sufficient oxygen present in their snow holes.
DHL is committed to supporting its colleagues by offering them the chance to get involved with a range of fundraising events and experiences. This creates opportunities for colleagues to connect with one another and form micro-communities with like-minded team members within the broader DHL family.