During lockdown Ryan Herdsman suddenly found himself with an abundance of spare time after a member of his household contracted coronavirus. Ryan had to self isolate for two weeks and decided he wanted to spend this time by doing a little bit to help those on the frontlines. That’s when he came across an advertisement for Macmillan’s Game Heroes campaign, who were looking for people to fundraise by playing games and streaming it live on the internet for 24 hours straight.
Ryan said: “I know cancer nurses are still working extremely hard, and know firsthand how much they help having had family members go through battles with cancer. I thought this would be a perfect way to help as I’m stuck in the house anyway. I looked into whether this would be possible and decided that it was. I then set my fundraising date for April 26.”
Ryan set an initial £50 fundraising goal but reached that amount in just 15 minutes. With generous donations pouring in, Ryan kept increasing his goal until it was at £500 on the day of his day-long video game challenge.
“I started my 24 hour marathon at 10 am. I was fully stocked with snacks that my sister had kindly dropped off, and some extra goodies that were generously donated by R. Little Bakers. The first ten hours were a breeze, I was kept company by my fantastic mates who rotated in throughout the 24 hours to keep me going.” He added: “The fatigue started kicking in and by hour 18, I was really struggling. My eyes were heavy, my back and wrists were aching, and I was starting to get agitated from sitting at the screen all day. The bed beside me was getting really tempting but I managed to carry on.”
By 6 am Ryan knew a final push was needed as the end was in sight. His girlfriend helped to see him through the last four hours. He said: “It was a struggle but I finally got over the finish line and I achieved my goal. I was exhausted but more importantly I was excited and proud of what I’d manage to accomplish.” Ryan has praised everyone who donated as he smashed his £500 target and ended up raising a total of £650. He added: “This still feels unbelievable to me and I just want to say a massive thank you to everyone who supported me.”
Moffat Macmillan Cancer Support Fundraising Group member Anne Garrett said: “Everyone here would like to thank Ryan for his fantastic fundraiser which raised a great amount of money and will go a long way.”