Family fun beats weather to raise hundreds of pounds for charity challenge

Date published: 14 August 2019

Families came together and had fun at Woolworths Social Club on Saturday 10 August, raising £400 towards a local disabled man’s charity challenge.

Andy Walker MBE, who is quadriplegic, is taking part in the Regain Cycle Kenya challenge in October 2019, an incredible 400km route through Rift Valley to Lake Victoria to raise funds for the charity.

Regain is the only charity dedicated to improving the independence of all British men and women who have become tetraplegic through a sports injury.

Andy became paralysed from the neck down after a diving accident in Goa in 2006, surviving only because he was spotted by two friends who pulled him to safety. Moved to a specialist hospital for spinal injuries in Delhi, he underwent a major operation to realign his spine.

He spent a further eight months at Sheffield Northern Hospital after he was flown back to England, and, in 2019, was awarded an MBE for his services to people with disabilities.

At the fun day, Andy was to demonstrate his specially adapted cycle, a four-wheeler which he guides with his chin, but the rain prevented this.

Speaking to Mayor Billy Sheerin, Andy said how humbled he was at the turn out: “This is the sort of community spirit that Rochdale and Oldham folk rise to; having fun, despite the rain.”

The Mayor also joined in the fun, watching toddlers enjoy the indoor soft play area and tasting a sample from the barbecue.

Andy added: “Regain is truly one of the world’s most unsung charities, making such a huge difference to the lives of people living with a high-level spinal cord injury.  

“They helped to transform my opportunities and attitude, supporting me over the past 13 years without any question of repayment, need for thanks, or asking one single thing in return.

“They have helped me overcome every challenge and aspect of living with a spinal cord injury – a wheelchair, a mentor and life-changing advice. 

“Your fantastic generosity will help transform the lives of so many people and their families.”

If you can help Andy’s incredible challenge with a donation, please visit:

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