A CHARITY appeal has reached its target, with help from a Wilsford man who rowed one million miles on a rowing machine.
Gary Hood completed his challenge by rowing the final 60,000 metres in one day last Wednesday on Rauceby Primary School’s playground. He was raising money for Joel’s Quest - Joel James is a schoolmate of his son Sam.
Gary took up the rowing challenge a few months ago as his 50th birthday would coincide with the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee on June 3 and he pledged to row 60,000m to commemorate the event.
Gary’s wife Penny said: “Gary’s 60,000 metre row went brilliantly on Wednesday. The last 5,000 metres were exhausting to watch let alone do but he did a fantastic job, completing the non-stop row in four hours, 16 minutes and 20 seconds.”
So far, Gary has collected £1,615 through his JustGiving page and donations.
Joel’s Quest was set up to raise at least £40,000 to enable 11-year-old Joel, who has cerebral palsy, to undergo a pioneering operation in the USA to improve his mobility and quality of life.
Joel’s mum Karen said they were ‘over the moon’ to have now reached their target, adding: “We’d like to say a big thank you to everyone who has supported us or held events for us, especially to the Legionnaire’s Club who let us hold our family night there for free.”
Having reached their initial target, they are now aiming to raise another £10,000 to pay for Joel to have physiotherapy five times a week once he returns from the US.
Over the weekend Elite Fish & Chips had a special offer on haddock and chips, where all profits went to Joel. This raised £1,500 and a bowling night at Washingborough Bowls Club, organised by Starkey and Brown estate agents, raised over £1,000.
Joel’s family and supporters will be bag packing at Sleaford Sainsbury’s on Saturday. Volunteers willing to help out on the day can contact Karen James on 07900 916763.