Holly rides to Ghana!

(and runs, swims, cycles and kayaks). An amazing fundraising effort from one of our Under 16s.

CONGRATULATIONS to Havant’s own Holly Illing (GU16s) who has just exceeded her incredible
£2,000 fund raising target to help community projects in Ghana. Through the organisation “Plan My
Gap Year”, she is volunteering in February 2024 for 16 days in Ghana, to help community projects
and children through teaching English & Sport and renovating school facilities to create long-term

She has just completed her year-long personal goal for the Charity of Running, Walking, Cycling,
Swimming & Canoeing and in her words “Crawling at the end”, the distance from Emsworth to
Ghana. With everyone’s very kind help she has raised £2,000 from donations on her “Just Giving”
Website. In addition she has personally donated £390 of her own money from all of her Community
Hockey Coaching, Umpiring and England Football Leadership Academy wages and £180 from
baking healthy cup cakes, that were specially designed to enhance hockey performance!

The Aerobic Training certainly paid off in many ways, as Holly at England’s South Coast Talent
Academy recorded a score of 15 on the infamous 20m Beep Test, only stopping because she was
asked to! (You need a score of 8 to get into the British Army!)

Holly is very passionate about education and sport and how it can enrich people’s lives in so many
ways. She loves helping others through teaching and coaching sports having volunteered at Havant
Minis, U12s and the Day Camps for years. She also coaches on the England Football Leadership
Academy Programme. She is now seizing this opportunity to help children in Africa enhance their
education and life experiences through sport.

Holly recently wrote to Grays Hockey having always used their sticks. She simply asked for any
small items, T/Shirts, caps etc to give to the Ghanaian children. She actually has to leave in Ghana
her suitcase of clothes to help the local community. Grays Hockey replied with a lovely email and
was very touched by her request. They have kindly sent some clothes to give to the children in
Ghana. They also asked about Holly’s hockey and were interested she was part of the new South
Coast Talent Academy. They have now agreed to sponsor Holly with her hockey. Thank you to

So as Holly leaves for Ghana on the 28th January we all wish her the very best on this incredible
expedition. If anyone wanted to learn more about Holly’s Journey, or contribute further, the website link is below.