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Josh takes on chilly 30-day challenge for children’s hospice

28 February 2023 chsw Fundraising

A Torquay man has been braving freezing cold water every day throughout February to raise money for Children’s Hospice South West (CHSW).

When many people are cranking up the temperature on their morning shower, Josh Butler, 27, can usually be found channelling his inner Wim Hof and slowly plunging into an ice bath pod in his back garden.

Inspired by the legendary Dutch ‘Iceman’, and by hearing about the vital care that CHSW offers children and young people with life-limiting conditions and their families, Josh hopes to raise £1,000 for the charity by completing his 30-day cold water challenge. 

Josh Butler is taking an icy dip every day to raise money Children’s Hospice South West

“I’ve had cold showers in the past but have never done anything like this before,” said Josh, a partner manager of South West internet connectivity specialist Triangle Networks.

“It’s always really hard getting in and it doesn’t get any easier each day you do it. But after around 30-60 seconds, your breathing starts to slow down and as long as you don’t move around, your body gets used to the cold. 

"I’ve described it to people as ‘type two’ fun as you really do feel great afterwards; it’s incredibly energising and I’ve found it really helps with mental clarity.”

Josh’s first dip lasted five minutes but his record time in the tub so far has been 16 minutes. Temperatures have ranged from 5.3 to 8.9 degrees Celsius.

I have promised to add a bit of ice if the water gets too balmy.

“There has been frost on the ground some days but I haven’t had to break any ice yet.

“This is all about resiliency, though – a word that I think of when I think of CHSW.

“The charity works tirelessly to support local children and families, and the impact this has on their lives is nothing short of amazing. 

Every day I’ve taken the plunge without fail, as this is exactly what CHSW does with their work.

There is no day off for these children and their families, and every day, CHSW is doing all it can to provide the best possible support. 

Josh Butler is taking an icy dip every day to raise money Children’s Hospice South West
“The love and care shown by CHSW, and the gratefulness and appreciation from the children and families shown in return, has to be one of the most special exchanges you could imagine.”

CHSW supports more than 550 children and young people with life-limiting conditions and their families across the South West with a range of free services, all available 24 hours-a-day, 365 days-a-year.   

The charity’s three hospices – Little Bridge House in Devon, Charlton Farm near Bristol, and Little Harbour in St Austell – offer short breaks; specialist medical, palliative, emergency and end-of-life care; play and music therapy; activities for siblings; and bereavement support.

“I’m really grateful for everyone’s ‘warm’ wishes and donations so far,” added Josh, who also thanked Lumi Therapy for donating the ice bath pods that he’s using for his challenge.

“If anyone would still like to make a donation, they can do so on my JustGiving page.”

To make a donation to support Josh’s challenge, click here

Josh's chilly 30-day challenge for children’s hospice