Skydiving Great-Grandma takes to the sky for children’s charity!
As a North West England based business that is passionate about supporting local, we also take great pride in the activities of people within the community. What can be more inspiring than a Great Grandma jumping out of an aeroplane to raise money for a local children’s charity?!
That is exactly what 90-year-old Patricia Baker is planning on doing this weekend (Sunday 4th October). Patricia from Farington (Lancashire) is going to be skydiving from 15,000ft to raise money for Derian House Children’s Hospice.
Patricia will be cheered on by her daughter Carole and sons Michael and Stephen and whilst she had originally set a fundraising target of £500, she has already far exceeded that and the total is currently £1,3000!
The money raised will be split between Derian House and Hillside specialist school in Longridge, which supports her Great-Grandson Max. Both are very worthy causes and will benefit greatly from Pat’s gesture.
Adventurous Pat, who has six Grandchildren and four Great-Grandchildren, said: “My friend had her 90th birthday a week before me, in July. She was telling me about her ‘bucket list’ of things she was going to do and asked what mine was. I said I’d not really thought about it, so I had a think and decided to do one big thing instead.
“I have always wanted to skydive, but it just never came up over the years. I’m not frightened of heights – I’ve been up in a hot air balloon and paragliding before, but I’ve never been to 15,000ft so this will be a new experience.”
Pat has had to undertake some strict medical examinations to be granted permission to carry out the sponsored skydive and some of the pre-jump training has even been an achievement in itself. Pat has doing 50 sit-ups a day and sessions of stretching exercises.
She has completed a rigorous medical test at Black Knights Parachute Centre in Cockerham (where she will jump from) and some of the tests saw her harnessed-up and suspended from the ceiling as well as timed holding her legs up to see if she could land safely – all of which she passed with flying colours.
Pat admits that her friends at the Crown Green Bowling Club she plays for think she’s “crackers” but said that they have all sponsored her and are behind her all the way.
“I wouldn’t do this for myself,” Pat continued, “but I thought I’d like to do it to raise money for children. I wanted to do it for Derian House because the children there don’t get to have a full life like I’ve had and I think the work the staff do is fantastic.”
Caroline Taylor, Communications and Marketing Manager at Derian House Children’s Hospice, said: “We see some truly amazing fundraising challenges here at Derian House but what Patricia is doing is simply inspirational. What a legend!”
Caroline added, “At Derian House we look after more than 400 babies, children and young adults with life-limiting illnesses, making sure they get the very best care and have the opportunity to create precious memories with their families. It is only down to the generosity of supporters such as Pat that we are able to offer this service and on behalf of all of our children and their families we are truly grateful.”
Go Trade Local Managing Director Harry Longworth said, “It’s great to hear about what Patricia is doing for Derian House. As a local business we are well aware of the great work that the team at Derian do within their Hospice and that they rely heavily on fundraising efforts from the community. The team at Go Trade Local is wishing Patricia the best of luck for her skydive and hope she manages to raise lots of money for a charity that means so much to so many families in the North West.”
Good luck Pat from the whole Team at Go Trade Local and if anyone would like to sponsor her, please visit: https://www.justgiving.com/fundraising/patricia-baker-90
Visit https://www.derianhouse.co.uk/ to find out more about the charity.