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Charity Ball Raises Money for Sports Wheelchairs

At the end of March, The Folkestone Academy hosted a charity ball, raising nearly £1400 towards the purchase of ten sports wheelchairs that would enable three students to take part in competitive sport within and outside the Academy.  With a target of £5000, the first charity event was crucial to kick start the fundraising challenge.

The three Folkestone Academy students, Scott Broom, Travis Sharp and Thomas West, along with their Physical Disability Learning Coach, Miss Laura Bennett, welcomed over eighty people, including Folkestone’s Town Mayor Councillor Rodica Wheeler and Consort Mr Matthew Lawson, to the Dover Town Hall, where the charity ball was held.

Miss Bennett, who organised the event, comments on the evening: “I’m so grateful to everyone who supported this event.  The money raised was an amazing amount and has motivated us to keep going to raise more.  I would like to thank all the businesses that donated a raffle prize; this gave an overwhelming boost to the pot of money.”

As someone who works closely with the three disabled boys, Miss Bennett comments on how the sports wheelchairs will benefit them: “The sports wheelchairs will open up more opportunities to the boys and help the Academy to become more inclusive.  The integration during PE lessons will give them more chance to excel in competitive sports such as wheelchair basketball. It will mean we can offer future disabled students more sports activities alongside their academic studies.”

The money raised through ticket sales and raffle prizes from the charity ball, together with other donations from individuals, has generated enough money for five wheelchairs to be purchased, at a cost of £430 each. Fundraising will continue with further events planned over the next few months to purchase another five wheelchairs.  The next planned events will include a quiz night and staff boxing event in partnership with Folkestone Boxing Club.