Norwich five-a-side football tournament raises funds to thank Nelson’s Journey for support of family

Nelson the Cat and Nicola Hoffman face the players at the 5-a-side tournament she organised in memory of her brother Mark. PHOTO BY SIMON FINLAY Nelson the Cat and Nicola Hoffman face the players at the 5-a-side tournament she organised in memory of her brother Mark. PHOTO BY SIMON FINLAY

David Bale david.bale2@archant.co.uk
Monday, June 10, 2013
7:22 AM

A Costessey man who took his own life was remembered at a charity football tournament in aid of Norwich-based charity, Nelson’s Journey.

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Nelson the Cat and Nicola Hoffman face the players at the 5-a-side tournament she organised in memory of her brother Mark.
PHOTO BY SIMON FINLAYNelson the Cat and Nicola Hoffman face the players at the 5-a-side tournament she organised in memory of her brother Mark. PHOTO BY SIMON FINLAY

Mark Hoffman, 30, a landscape gardener from Norwich Road, committed suicide in March 2011 and the tournament was organised by his sister Nicola Hoffman, 25, to thank the bereaved children’s charity for its help after his death.

Nelson’s Journey supported her son, Lewis Dugdale, eight, following the events, and several members of the family including Mr Hoffman’s father, uncle and cousins took part in the five-a-side tournament on Saturday at the football development centre in Bowthorpe.

Twenty teams took part including the team Mr Hoffman played for, the Dyers Arms.

Miss Hoffman, from Bowthorpe, said: “When my brother took his own life, it was obviously a very difficult and traumatic time for both myself and my son.

Mark HoffmanMark Hoffman

“I was coming to terms with my own grief as well as having to be strong and help my son through the loss of his beloved uncle.

“I knew that both of us needed some help. I was aware of Nelson’s Journey because they had helped a friend’s child through the bereavement of their parent.

“I chose to go to them because they specifically deal with children and at the time my son was only six.

“I’m glad I picked Nelson’s Journey; not only did they help my son understand his feelings, they taught him to how to remember all the positive things about his uncle and how not to dwell on his death, as well as how to cope with very negative feelings such as anger. In turn, not only did they help my son, they helped me as well.”

Tamarin Howard, funding and marketing support officer for Nelson’s Journey, said: “I’m absolutely gobsmacked at how much work went into the event and how successful it was.

“It shows that the work we do is worth it, and we are very grateful to Nicola and her family.”

The charity hopes to have raised about £2,000 from the event.

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