Alexandra and Jeremy Harvey from Leigh-on-Sea abseiled down the iconic metal structure in Stratford, London to raise money for Havens Hospices and the new adult’s hospice the charity is building for South East Essex after accessing the current facility this year.
The family which also includes 10-year old Matea and her little sister eight-year old Dasia have been big supporters of the charity over the years by holding a few fundraiser coffee mornings to making donations. The girls enjoy fundraising for the charity and have found their own unique ways to raise vital funds from selling waffles to friends and neighbours to even asking guests at parties to donate – Dasia even did it at her parent’s recent Vow Renewal earlier this year.
However, in May 2018 Alexandra, 43, was diagnosed with bowel cancer and although she underwent major surgery to remove a section of her bowel as well as chemotherapy the cancer spread to her lungs and the family were told it was incurable. The family began accessing the charity’s services in January of this year. The family have accessed the charity’s wellbeing services including complementary therapy for Alexandra and counselling for Jeremy and the girls.
When Alexandra and Jeremy heard about the abseil they decided to do it together as part of their ‘bucket list’ and also to help the charity move to their new facility next year.
Jeremy explains, “After we got the prognosis, we both decided that we were going to make the most of things and make the most out of every moment we can. As well as making sure we travelled to as many new places we could with our girls, also we wanted to take on as many challenges together and push ourselves out of our comfort zones.
“Alex is scared of heights; she couldn’t even make it beyond the first platform of the Eiffel Tower; so, when she saw the challenge, she knew she wanted to do it and of course I was never going to let her do it alone! I’ve done an abseil before, but obviously Alex hasn’t – so I was never letting her go on her own, all our friends thought she was mad to sign up even though we all know she’ll conquer – because when Alex puts her mind to something she achieves it!”
One of the main reasons the couple decided to do the challenge was to create new memories for them and their daughters, Matea and Dasia who decided to race their parents down the structure by taking on the Orbital Slide at the same time.
“Taking on the abseil and the girl’s taking on the slide was another great way for us to make a new memory, which of course we’re trying to make as many of, because we really are so grateful for every moment that we share together. We are very lucky in this area to have Havens Hospices supporting the local community when they are needed most. Their ethos is ‘Making every day count’ and honestly, after receiving first hand support from them I can honestly say they have helped our family do just that.”
Alexandra and Jeremy have taken part in the abseil to raise funds for a new Fair Havens. Havens Hospices are now just under £350,000 away from hitting their fundraising target needed to complete the new 16-bed hospice opposite Priory Park. To sponsor Alexandra and Jeremy please click here .
Havens Hospices are offering daredevils the chance to take on the Accelor Orbital Abseil or a Bungee at the iconic Queen Elizabeth Park throughout 2020. So if you’ve been inspired by Alexandra and Jeremy and would like more information about our abseil, bungee or other challenges please email Emma Hamilton or call 01702 220308