Daredevil Deb Raises over £1000

Deborah Burton gives an exhilarating account of her daredevil skydive fundraising feat…

Date: 30 April 2006
Time: 5.15 p.m.

The plane is slowly gaining height and taking an age to reach 10,000 ft. I am terrified. My last chance to escape; but I can’t. My pride won’t allow it… and the fact that I shall be raising a lot of money for charity. Five months ago, I gave a talk to a group of 80 women. I mentioned that I wanted to do a skydive for charity and about half the people there signed-up to sponsor me.

Now the day has dawned after a night with little sleep. I had been hoping to jump early but fog prevented this. It’s almost time to go. The door is pulled back. I am the first to jump. I wriggle forward to the edge – my instructor pushes me over the side. Suddenly, we are falling, free-falling at 120 mph. I am upside down and not liking it at all. The G-force is intense. My instructor pulls the cord and the parachute opens. We drift down slowly, peacefully, calmly, chatting together as we drift over the Buckinghamshire countryside.

All too soon, we are rapidly coming into land and I try to remember the instructions so I don’t break any bones – mine or his! We are on the ground. It is over. I am relieved, thrilled, exhilarated… Would I do it again? Yes. It was very nerve-wracking but very, very exciting, especially for someone approaching 60! Best of all, I raised over £1,000 for a very worthwhile charity, United Through Sport.

Brilliant Book Benefits United Through Sport

Thanks to a genius spark of imagination and a very different slant on travel writing, Emily Monk, a Ghana volunteer, has raised nearly £3000 for United Through Sport. Her book ‘Don’t Tell Mum: Hair-raising Messages Home from Gap-year Travellers’ has been selling like hotcakes, and she has generously donated a large sum to the charity to support community development overseas.

The brilliant book reads as a series of real-life emails written by gap-year travelers, updating their friends and family on their exotic adventures. Where once the news of a fresh tattoo, the purchase of a gold Mercedes or a village chief’s proposal of marriage would have had to wait until a traveller’s return, those left at home are now able to follow every trial and tribulation of their loved one’s attempt to ‘find-themselves’. Together with Simon Hoggart, Emily has collected together the funniest, most surreal, most alarming gap-year e-mails into a treasure-trove of correspondence. Accompanied by their wicked commentary, Don’t Tell Mum invites us to live the gap-year experience without even having to leave the country.

Football Team Fully Equipped

A local township football team on the famous South African Garden Route was this month fully equipped with crucial kit thanks to a £500 grant from United Through Sport.

The team is a vital social lifeline for a group of poverty-affected children between the ages of 8 and 13. With the help of the charity, a 14-strong squad has now been provided with numbered jerseys, shorts, socks and 10 training balls to sharpen their skills.

The donation was made with the assistance of Ashley Wentworth and Stormsriver Adventures, and the equipment was handed over with a fantastic reception from around 70 local supporters.

DJs Play at Play for United Through Sport

On 25th October 2005, seven house DJs played to a crowd of 200 revellers at Play Bar in Clerkenwell, London. The event raised over £600 for United Through Sport.

The free-entry event was a great success and was aided by the change of the clocks which allowed the late licences to carry on a little later!

Many thanks to Dan Woods and John Atherton who arranged the venue, DJs and concluded the night with a solid back-to-back set!

 

Military Challenge Raises £600

On 22nd October 2005, a group of strapping young lads embarked on a 7 mile marine style assault course, consisting of a 4 mile run, muddy bogs, underwater tunnels, freezing pools and a few surprises besides!

The event raised over £600 for United Through Sport. Many thanks to Andrew Platt, Richard Webley, Andrew McGinnigal, Chris Fairfax and Toby Hansen for their fantastic efforts.