A LEIGH-based fundraiser is organising a series of events in aid of the Samaritans charity.
Matthew Ponting, 28, is running the London Marathon in April 2024 in aid of the life-saving charity, alongside his friend Mike Barnes, 28, from Rayleigh who is also running the ambitious race in aid of the children’s charity Barnardo’s.
Thinking about how they could jointly fundraise for their chosen charities, they struck upon the idea of a charity football match of Samaritans vs. Barnardos.
The friendly local sporting event took place at Chase High School on Sunday, November 19, raising £1,300.
Mr Ponting is no stranger to the game, as he explained: “A lot of our players used to play for Estuary United, and often took part in the Southend & Basildon Sunday Football League”
On the day, the newly amassed teams did the fundraisers proud.
Mr Ponting added: “In the end, Samaritans clinched the Leigh Tandoori Cup in sudden death.
“I am delighted with the effort and sportsmanship displayed by all players involved on the day. It felt truly humbling to have such a big turnout on the side lines from our friends and family, who all created a fantastic atmosphere and donated so generously.”
Mr Ponting is aiming to raise £2,000 for Samaritans: “I chose them because I believe I completely and unequivocally share their core values, which represent kindness at all times to all humans because you never know the inner struggles people might be facing,” he added.
Well on the way to their targets, Mr Barnes and Mr Ponting are in full training mode, with two half marathons under their belt.
The pair are also planning a charity quiz at Leigh Tandoori, and a fundraising gig for New Year.
To donate to their respective fundraising pages visit: 2024tcslondonmarathon.enthuse.com/pf/matthew-ponting & 2024tcslondonmarathon.enthuse.com/pf/michael-barnes.
Picture: Samaritans vs. Barnardos match at Chase High School.
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