Zacks Go Purple on their 300 mile challenge for Jewish Care

18 Jun 2020

Twenty-three year old Natasha Zack and her mum Helen, have set themselves a goal of walking 300 miles between them to raise money for Jewish Care in June. They are also taking on 30 second challenges to do on their walks and are filming them along the way. So far their 30 second challenges have included hoopla, dance moves, standing on one leg, sit ups, press ups and of course wearing purple for Jewish Care’s Go Purple week.

The mother and daughter duo from Chigwell had decided to take on the challenge in April but had to postpone this because of lockdown. They are walking in memory of Leslie Sherman and Harold Zack, Helen’s dad and father-in-law and Natasha’s Zeida (Yiddush for Grandpa) and Grandad who were both cared for at Jewish Care’s Vi & John Rubens House in Ilford.

Helen works as a receptionist and administrator at the care home and Natasha is a communications intern. Helen says, “I will be walking 100 miles and Tash will be walking 200 to reach our combined 300 miles together.

(Harold Zack)


(Leslie Sherman)

“Leslie, my Dad, was one of life’s great helpers. He was the Treasurer of the Fundraising Committee for Vi & John Ruben’s House for a number of years. To be able to raise money like this was always very important to him. When he needed more support following his diagnosis with Parkinson’s and Parkinson’s Dementia, he began going to Jewish Care’s Dennis Centre for people living with dementia which is next door to the care home. As his condition progressed and couldn’t go to the Dennis Centre it wasn’t even a question of where he would go next when more care was needed.

“Jewish Care’s Vi & John Rubens House care home has been part of our family for a very long time. In the 80’s both my Nanas, Annie Sherman and Dora West were residents at Vi & John and my great aunty Ruchel was a resident there too after that.

Another great-aunt and great-uncle of mine, Pearly and Lionel Winston, also lived at Jewish Care’s Hyman Fine House in Brighton.”

Helen says, “The challenge for me is the walking itself as I have fibromyalgia. It causes simple things such as walking to be painful. Since starting this I have surprised myself with the distance I have walked. It’s been good to have socially distanced visits while walking with my daughter to our friends during lockdown and we welcome more fun challenges en route too.

Natasha adds, “My Grandad was always full of joy right to the end. The last time I saw and spoke to him was saying goodbye and that I’ll see him soon, the day before I left for my travels in Australia. He passed away the day after I landed. Jewish Care were amazing in the care home and I have so much to thank them for. It would mean so much to us if people would donate to our fundraiser.

“I felt that this was a great way to show our appreciation for the work Jewish Care do, whilst raising money for this worthwhile cause. I also hope that this will help to encourage others to be more active too and not take health for granted. Though both my grandfathers were active in their lives, Zeida had Parkinson’s and dementia and my Grandad had a stroke which severely affected his mobility afterwards. Whilst you never know what will happen in the future, we do have control over what we do today.

“We have been really grateful for all the support that Jewish Care gave to my grandfathers and our extended family. They have done wonderful things for my family and continues to do so for others.”

Jewish Care’s Director of Fundraising & Community Engagement, Adam Overlander-Kaye, said. “I’d like to thank Helen and Natasha for taking on this challenge to walk an impressive 300 miles together in June to help raise funds and awareness for Jewish Care to support our residents at Vi & John Ruben’s House. They are approaching this tough challenge in such a fun way, including embracing our Go Purple week with purple wigs and accessories.

“It is a very special way and personal way to pay tribute to the memory of their grandparents and parents as well as those who work with such dedication in our care homes and for those living in the Jewish community with their families and carers who rely on our services.”

You can support Helen and Natasha’s and fundraiser here justgiving.com/fundraising/getwalking1

To find out more about taking on a challenge for Jewish Care visit www.jewishcare.org/challenges or call 020 8922 2834.