Greenwich Wellness Rooms Supports Rebels Without Paws to Row the English Channel!

The Greenwich Wellness Rooms is a bespoke wellness centre based in Greenwich. They are committed to improving all aspects of wellbeing, and have an extensive team of experts to meet your every need.

Rebels Team Captain, Libby, is a Counsellor and Mindfulness Teacher at the Centre. Rowing the Channel was her brainchild, and Libby explains that “Training to be a mindfulness teacher has helped me experience things I might otherwise find terrifying!”.

If you’ve read our earlier Blogs, you’ll know that Libby swam the Channel last year and decided to ask her friends to take part in the latest challenge to raise funds for The AHOY Centre in Deptford. The AHOY, which helps empower disadvantaged young people to change their lives through sailing and rowing, has a huge impact in our local community.

The Greenwich Wellness Rooms have also stepped up to the challenge offering their services to our rowing team for free. A personal trainer will help with our fitness, a voice coach will train the crew’s Cox to project her voice; a nutritionist will ensure the team are eating well; and an osteopath will help improve our joints. This teamwork will ensure that we reach optimum wellness by the time we set off. Find out more about the services that Greenwich Wellness Rooms offers here.

Nicola Vanlint, Co-Founder and Psychotherapist at the Greenwich Wellness Rooms said: “We are focused on teamwork and improving wellbeing within the community, so couldn’t think of a better challenge to support than a team of rowers rowing to raise funds for a local charity committed to that cause.”

The Greenwich Wellness Rooms is based on the seven dimensions of wellness, which the challenge ties in with:

  • Physical – the challenge is intensely physical and will stretch the team
    • Emotional – Rowing the Channel will be an emotional journey
    • Social – the tean have bonded over our shared love of dog walking and have formed new relationships which have enabled this challenge
    • Occupational – some of the team work in the field of wellbeing including Libby, a trained counsellor
    • Intellectual – as we prepare to row the Channel we are learning new skills along the way
    • Spiritual – having the courage to take off in a boat together is a spiritual quest in many ways
    • Environmental – on the water, everyone is subject to the environment and has to work with the elements

Find out more about Greenwich Wellness Rooms’ commitment to wellness here.

We have now raised over half of our fundraising target of £12,000. Our next hosted event is Afternoon Tea at Severndroog Castle to celebrate the Royal Wedding! Tickets (£15.00 each) can be booked by emailing:

Support the Greenwich Wellness Rooms and the rowing team and donate to this worthy cause here.


On behalf of Rebels Without Paws

Fundraising update and more thank yous!

The Rebels team have been busy pushing towards their fundrasing target of £12,000, all with the continued help and support of some great local organisations.

Sunday 8 April saw our fundraising stall at Greenwich Market. As with much of Royal Greenwich, the Market is steeped in history. According to the Market’s website: “Greenwich has long been home to a Royal Charter Market which was originally assigned to the Commissioners of Greenwich Hospital on the 19th December 1700 for 1,000 years.” To have the chance to take our fundraising to such a wonderful location, and to be so warmly supported by Market Manager, Ben and his Team, felt like a great privilege.

Despite the rain, we did our best to rouse the spirits of market visitors by rowing the equivalent distance of our Channel row on a rowing machine borrowed from The AHOY Centre. Credit must go to Andy Murphy from The AHOY Centre, who gave up his Sunday to come and support us in awful weather conditions!


Thank you to everyone who bought some of our handmade goodies for their dog, or who put money in our collection buckets: you kept us going in the cold and rain and made it all worthwhile. In total we raised £336.00 and have now reached a total of £5,685.00 towards our £12,000.00 target. If you haven’t donated yet, and can help us reach the next huge milestone of £6,000.00, then you can donate here.

We’ve got some exciting events planned for May & June, and tickets are on sale now. On Saturday 19 May we have the honour of being able to host a celebration Afternoon Tea at another historic Greenwich venue: Severndroog Castle. Tickets are £15.00 for tea, cake & sandwiches (donations over and above the ticket price are welcomed). We’ll also be offering a free glass of prosecco so that you can raise a toast to Prince Harry & Meghan! If you’d like to book a ticket, please email:

Friday 1 June will see ‘Paws II: Quiz Night’ in the Old Library Bar, Shrewsbury House. Tickets are £5.00 each (again, donations above the ticket price will not be turned away!) and those who come along are invited to bring their own nibbles and snacks (no food will be provided on the night). There will also be some fabulous Lots to bid for in our silent auction, so don’t miss out: book your tickets by email:

Thanks to all the amazing people who continue to support our efforts to raise funds for a fabulous charity. If you’re not familiar with what The AHOY Centre do, please take a couple of minutes to read all about them. Who knows, maybe this time next year we’ll be supporting your team as you fundraise for your own Channel row!

Thanks for reading.

Team Rebels Without Paws


A big thank you following a big weekend!

What a weekend for the Rebels Without Paws team! Friday and Sunday saw our biggest fundraising push to date with a quiz night at Shrewsbury House, followed by a Vintage and Craft Fair (also at Shrewsbury House).

Together, the 2 events boosted our fundraising total significantly, and the amount raised to date now stands at £4705. We are so grateful to all of those who turned out to support us over the weekend, especially as we were in the grip of the winter’s biggest freeze. The warmth and generosity people have shown has been incredible, and it all helps to keep us motivated to push on to achieve our £12,000.00 target.

One thing we all know for certain: we wouldn’t have had so much success without the support of some incredible individuals and organisations. We’d therefore like to publicly thank:

  • Gary at Diamond Digital for the leaflets
  • Jess and John and their staff at Shrewsbury House for helping with the quiz night and hosting the event in the bar at the House (incidentally open every Friday evening, if you’re local!)
  • Emma at Sweet William Designs for the generous donation of some beautiful doggy items for our raffle, craft stall and other up and coming events
  • The Kennel Club for the generous donation of Crufts tickets
  • Pets at Home, Charlton for the donation for our Facebook auction
  • Karin at Twisted Threads for the donation of coats, ladies wear & accessories for our raffle, craft stall and other up and coming events
  • The Staff at The Ahoy Centre for their on-going encouragement, support & training advice
  • All our friends and family who are continuing to lend a hand in lots of different ways (even though some of them think we’re crazy!)

If we’ve not mentioned you here, rest assured you’ll be named in future posts, because the list of people to thank is far from finished. We’ve got some more exciting events planned between now & June, and have already secured some gorgeous goodies, generously donated from both local and national organisations. Watch this space for more, and if you are local, keep your eyes peeled for the chance to join us as some fun community events.

Finally, not only was the weekend a big one for fundraising, but Team Captain, Libby, had her first on-water rowing training session. Libby and friends are taking part in The Ahoy Centre’s Meridian Pull on Sunday 11 March. The rest of the Rebels Team will be eagerly cheering them on, while counting the days until we all start our water rowing training (first session’s booked for 29 April!).

Keep in touch with our training progress, how we’re going with fund-raising target, and to find out how you can get involved in future events, by checking in with this blog. Not donated yet? You can do so here.

Thanks for reading!

Rebels Without Paws

How? When? Why?

I find myself asking: how on earth did we get here? A cold and frosty rememberance Sunday in 2017 and 7 women and their 12 dogs are lined up for a team photo. Not just any team, I hasten to add: Team Rebels Without Paws.

The answer to the question of ‘how’, is an interesting one. It’s fair to say it just sort of ‘happened’. Or rather, Libby (team captain) made it happen. Kallie, the only one in our team with any sort of rowing pedigree, had taken part in the Ahoy Centre’s Meridian Pull (an 8.5 mile row on the River Thames) over the summer. I have to admit to being quite envious. I get a thing about rowing every 4 years when Team GB smash it at the Olympics. But until a chance conversation with Libby one morning about how I really fancied doing what Kallie was doing, getting in to a boat had never been more than a daydream.

I should have known better than to admit my dream about taking on a rowing challenge to Libby. Last time we had one of these conversations, we ended up in a Half Iron Man relay. It can only be said that Libby is like the proverbial dog with a bone when an idea takes hold, so after the seed was planted, off she went to do some research. Next thing I know, we aren’t talking about a row up the Thames, Libby’s got us all but signed up to row the Channel. Now it’s important to say here that Libby has a strong connection with the English Channel. She swam it in summer this year. There are no words for how brave we all think she is for doing that; it’s an incredible achievement and I have to admit, Libby’s enthusiasm is infectous.

And so it came to be. Libby set her mind to it; we were going to row the Channel. When? In June 2018. So off she went on a one-woman recruitment drive to find her team. With a little trepidation for some of us, the team was confirmed, and that’s how we came to meet on Rememberance Sunday for our first team photo shoot. Please meet Team Rebels without Paws:

Libby, Team Captain

Coxswain: to be named

The ‘why’ we’re doing it will be told through our personal stories that we’ll share as part of this blog. Ultimately, though, why wouldn’t we do something to raise money for the amazing Ahoy Centre and the wonderful work that they do to help disadvantaged young and disabled people?

You can show your support for Team Rebels by donating or sending a virtual cheer by leaving your comments, tips or pearls of wisdom in the blog comments. Thanks for reading! Michelle

Children In Need

Tonight is Children In Need. The amazing team from The Ahoy Centre will be in the audience with their yellow t-shirts on – look out for them! The Ahoy is a very grateful recipient of the generosity of Children In Need donations. Rebels Without Paws are doing their bit to raise money to help the Ahoy keep up their great work by rowing the channel in June 2018.

Can you give up your Friday night takeaway tonight & donate the money to this fabulous cause? The Ahoy Centre improves the lives of disadvantaged young people and disabled people. Donations will help to train and motivate young people to gain invaluable life experiences, national qualifications, transferable employment skills and instill ambition and good citizenship.

Donate here!