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Brave Simon in a race to remember

PUBLISHED: 13:19 09 May 2018

Wearing robotic legs lent for the challenge, Simon Kindleysides has become the first paralysed man to walk the London Marathon. Now he's raising funds for his own exo-skeleton robotic legs. Picture: Simon Kindleysides

Wearing robotic legs lent for the challenge, Simon Kindleysides has become the first paralysed man to walk the London Marathon. Now he's raising funds for his own exo-skeleton robotic legs. Picture: Simon Kindleysides

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In her latest monthly column, Gina Long hails more local charity fundraisers - including a remarkable London Marathon competitor.

Seven Jaguars celebrating their charity success.Seven Jaguars celebrating their charity success.

I was delighted to be amongst the other tens of thousands of people supporting the London Marathon runners on Sunday April 22, the commitment and dedication shown by the participants in such sweltering heat was absolutely awe-inspiring.

Sending huge congratulations to you all, you have made every single charity and good cause so happy and proud. You are all remarkable charity heroes. I was so inspired by you that I’ve already registered for next year in the hope of getting a place.

The Global Make Some Noise donation for the delighted Musical Keys team.The Global Make Some Noise donation for the delighted Musical Keys team.

Paralysed man is first ever to complete London Marathon

The Virgin Money Foundation is lining up a £500,000 fund to support Norfolk good causes.The Virgin Money Foundation is lining up a £500,000 fund to support Norfolk good causes.

One of the most heart-warming stories of those completing the London Marathon, was beyond inspirational - Simon Kindleysides from Norfolk.

Simon is paralysed from the waist down as a result of a benign tumour deep on his brain, he was determined to complete the gruelling 26.2 miles to raise funds for the Brain Tumour Charity. His mission was made possible by a ReWalk exoskeleton suit that allows him to move about independently.

Completing the marathon in 27.5 hours, Simon raised £23,000 and is already looking for his next challenge. He now aims to complete Mount Snowdon by the end of the year, to raise funds for his own Exoskeleton suit costing around £80,000. Simon says: “The second I get my own suit - which I know is a lot of money, but you can’t put a price tag on walking - the world will be my oyster. Having raised thousands of pounds for charity over the years, not only will it be life-changing, it will be a good investment, allowing me to raise even more money for charity, going forward.”

Please consider visiting Simon’s Go Fund Me Page to help him raise crucial funds to gain his movement and independence back. www.gofundme.com/simonslegsforlife

Running Club raises more than £17,000 for charities

Among those pounding the streets in the London Marathon were a running club from Coltishall, who gathered ten members of the Coltishall Jaguars and together completed the marathon and raised £17,750 for various charities, including The Benjamin Foundation, Children with Cancer, Asthma UK, The Stroke Association, Priscilla Bacon Lodge group and other such worthy causes.

Despite the heat, the runners were in very good spirits on the day, with Nick Richards, one of the club members commenting,: “the one thing that kept me going was the fact I was doing something good for charity.”

You are all an inspiration, well done!

Musical Keys receive support from Global Make Some Noise

I’m so happy to hear that Norfolk charity Musical Keys have received a grant of £79,000 from the Global Make Some Noise charity, helping small charities and projects improve the lives of disadvantaged young people living with illness, disability or lack of opportunity.

Heart East Anglia presenters Dave and Heidi surprised the delighted charity with the cheque, allowing them to now fund the cost of weekly and fortnightly sessions in six different locations for the next two years. This project will use music to improve the emotional and mental well-being of children and young people. How wonderful is that?

Alison Cooper, Fundraising Manager at Musical Keys, says: “We cannot thank Heart East Anglia and their listeners enough for their incredible support – we are totally overwhelmed to be surprised with a cheque for £79,000!”

To find out more on how to get involved with Musical Keys, please do visit their website at www.musicalkeys.co.uk

Norfolk Charities to benefit from new grants programme

I was so excited to read about a new grants programme from The Virgin Money Foundation, who are allocating £500,000 of funding to support new charity projects and initiatives in Norfolk, focused on regenerating deprived communities.

The ‘Making a Splash’ fund, working in collaboration with Community Action Norfolk, is now open to applications for grants of up to £50,000 each.

However, the support from The Virgin Money Foundation is not just limited to monetary grants, they are able to offer support of skilled volunteers and mentoring to increase capacity on the work of new initiatives in Norfolk.

I would like to urge all charities and organisations in Norfolk to take advantage of this fantastic opportunity, to help grow the positive difference you all so kindly have on the Norfolk communities.

To find out more, do visit www.virginmoneyfoundation.org.uk/grants-programme/making-a-splash/

Please do share your charity stories with me, email all details and a photo to: gina@geewizzcharity.com Follow me on Twitter @geewizzgee1


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