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girls ALIVE

1806. Philippa Curphey
1807. Eleanor Lestrange

Philippa Curphey and Eleanor Lestrange, from Surrey, founded 'girls ALIVE’, an all-female, non-competitive sports club for women that is tackling the gender balance in sports participation.

Philippa Curphey and Eleanor Lestrange

Friends Philippa and Eleanor realised that, while looking after young children, they struggled to find time for exercise and it was affecting their wellbeing. They both resolved to become more active, with Philippa completing the London Marathon and Eleanor taking on a 100-mile cycling challenge in 2017, and following this decided to launch a club to help other women tap into the positive benefits of exercise. The organisation provides regular, volunteer-led activity groups for runners, cyclists, swimmers and hikers of all ages and abilities, bringing life-changing improvements to the physical and mental health of their members.

In a personal letter to Philippa, Prime Minister Boris Johnson said:

“Through ‘girls ALIVE’ you have created a community for women to find new sports and activities to enjoy. Whether it’s cycling, running or hiking in the great outdoors, your groups are a space to have fun and get fit. 

“Alongside Eleanor, and your army of volunteers, you are bringing life-changing improvements to the physical and mental health of your members.”

In a personal letter to Eleanor, Prime Minister Boris Johnson said:

“We all know the benefits of exercise on our physical and mental wellbeing. So it is wonderful that you have created a community for women to come together to get active and get to know each other at the same time.

“Your initiative ‘girls ALIVE’ is a brilliant example of how individuals can create positive changes right across their communities and beyond.”

Philippa and Eleanor said:

“BOOM!! We are totally blown away to receive this award and for the life-changing impact of ‘girls ALIVE’ on the health and wellbeing of women, to be highlighted in this way. As Founders, we simply lit the touchpaper that started a chain reaction of encouragement, inspiration and support that is kept rolling, on a daily basis, by our brilliant army of volunteers. This award is dedicated to them. This community of women is a powerhouse of positive change.”

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The daily Points of Light award recognises outstanding individual volunteers - people who are making a change in their community.

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