YMCA DownsLink Challenge - YMCA DownsLink Group
DownsLink Challenge Logo-01

Saturday 15th July 2023

DownsLink Challenge Logo-01

Saturday 15th July 2023

The DownsLink Challenge is back by popular demand! Take on the 17.5-mile walk along the Downs Link Pathway (which is what we're named after!) from Horsham to Shoreham-by-Sea and help us put young people experiencing homeless back on the path to independence.


What we do:

We prevent youth homelessness through accommodation, support and advice. Every night we provide a safe home to over 640 young people in your community. Each and every one has faced serious challenges in their lives. No young person chooses to be homeless.

Why take part?

Do it alone or in a group, we guarantee you'll have a great day all in aid of ending youth homelessness by helping us ensure all young people living with us or being supported by us move on positively and independently, forever.

Step out with us and together we can end youth homelessness!

Key details:

Date: Saturday 15th July 2023

From: Southwater Country Park, Horsham

To: Shoreham-by-Sea

Registration fee: £20 per person

Minimum Sponsorship: £75 per person

Event type: 17.5 mile walk, mostly flat


Once you have entered come back and set up your JustGiving page here!

What's included in the registration fee and what to expect on the day:

  • 1X Free YMCA DownsLink Challenge t-shirt
  • Water at aid stations, fruit and energy bars
  • Medical assistance, if needed
  • A clearly marked route
  • Support and enthusiasm along the way
  • Dedicated aid stations along the route
  • A medal at the end to celebrate your achievement!
  • A goodie bag
  • More questions? Check out our FAQs page

Set up your YMCA DownsLink Challenge JustGiving page

Start planning fundraising ideas - to get you started we've developed a fundraising pack, full of ideas.

Can you help us reach our target?


Sign up now!

Who will benefit from the funds raised?

Thanks to people like you the funds raised from last year's YMCA DownsLink Challenge went towards supporting YMCA DownsLink Group's mission to end youth homelessness through our accommodation, support and advice projects in addition to supporting the charity so we can continue to put on events like this and raise more money all in aid of tackling the root causes of youth homelessness.

Jack's dad kicked him out when he came out as gay, could you help someone like Jack? Hear his story in the video below:

Want to take part in your own space?

We welcome supporters wanting to walk or run closer to home and in their own time, with a remote YMCA DownsLink Challenge! Below are links to some suggested walking routes across our localities, or feel free to make use of your own garden or treadmill. However you choose to take part, every step will go a long way to supporting homeless young people.

Click the links for suggested walking routes in East Sussex, West Sussex, Brighton & Hove or Guildford.

Set up a JustGiving page to track your fundraising!

Read our stories to find out how your support makes a difference:

Emi, e-wellbeing Youth Mental Health champion smiling, waring a denim jacket and white t-shirt

Emi’s story

Emi is one of our e-wellbeing Youth Researchers. After experiencing her own mental health struggles at a young age, Emi was determined to help other young people like herself.

Read More
Georgia, smiling stood against a green background with a plant to her side

Georgia’s story

Georgia had her independence taken away from her when her living situation became unmanageable. She was given a home at YMCA DownsLink Group and received support to reconnect with her family and learn vital life skills.

Read More
Temesgen smiling holding his medal at the end of the DownsLink Challenge

Temesgen’s story

At just 16, Temesgen had to leave his family in Ethiopia and start a new life in the UK. He was given a home with us and received support to learn English, take part in volunteering and join in with YMCA activities.

Read More



Check out our FAQ page and if your query isn’t found there please email: [email protected] 


YMCA enables people to develop their full potential in mind, body and spirit. Inspired by and faithful to our Christian values, we create supportive, inclusive and energising communities, where young people can truly belong, contribute and thrive.

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