A brand film for Hannah's sponsors
It's shortly after dawn on a typically cold and windy autumn morning. We're watching five times Paralympic gold medal winner Hannah Cockroft MBE putting in some serious miles around Spring Hall Sports Facility's athletics track.
It's the start of a long day's filming to capture Hannah on her daily training regime, and will end with the sun setting over narrow country roads on the windswept moors above Halifax.
We're making a film for one of Hannah's proud sponsors, Welcome Independent Living. They're a Yorkshire-based care provider, catering to the needs of elderly and disabled people across the region. Owner and managing director Mark Coup knew he wanted to sponsor Hannah after seeing a television interview in which she spoke of how difficult it was, as a disabled athlete, to find continuous sponsorship in order to fund her training and maintain her position at the top of her sport.
"We're extremely honoured to be working with Hannah and her team," says Mark. "We share the same dedication and Yorkshire grit to always give 110%, under complex and often financially challenging circumstances."
The film isn't just about Hannah's training regime. Mark wanted much of the focus to be on his own team of carers, demonstrating their commitment to providing high quality care for all. Their own personal stories would be interwoven with Hannah's, each answering a central question: What motivates you to succeed?
The carer's story
After establishing a snapshot of Hannah's daily training routine, the film picks up with some of Welcome Independent Living's employees. We wanted to provide an insight into their own daily routines, and the lengths they go to to provide the highest levels of care for their clients.
We recorded interviews with Hannah and the carers separately, to hear their thoughts in voice-over. This helps their stories blend seamlessly, and provides that 'tug on the heart strings' that really drives the messages home.
"No matter how long or hard your day's been," says home care assistant Abigail, "If you go home and know that you've made a massive difference to someone's life, that's rewarding enough."
Mark didn't want to use the film to promote his business, but rather showcase the commitment and dedication of his carers; a career (and industry) that is rarely cast in a positive light.
The film provides a voice to carers, and, through the interwoven stories and Hannah's own reflections on the importance of their work, gives new insight into their determination to look after society's most vulnerable people.
"I sometimes get called a role model," says Hannah. "But the real role models are Welcome Independent Living's carers."