Locals reach for the skies this weekend for hospice charity

The sky is the limit for four locals from Leigh-on-Sea as they prepare to skydive 13,000 feet in aid of the charity that supports their wife and friend.

Jason Freemantle and his friends Crystal, Simon and Callam will be braving the skies on Saturday 13th May in Kent in aid of Havens Hospices which cares for Amanda, Jason’s wife. This experience of a lifetime is their way of giving something back to the hospice that has supported Amanda since 2019.

Amanda would have loved to have completed the skydive herself but, due to her health, will instead be cheering on Jason, Crystal, Simon and Callam on the day with other family members.

Amanda, 42, was born with congenital heart disease. Her first heart surgery was at just three months old. Amanda’s condition deteriorated as she became older. She developed rheumatoid arthritis which then caused interstitial lung disease and fibromyalgia, a long-term condition that causes pain across the body. These conditions have contributed to Amanda developing heart failure and, in 2019, she was told there is no curative treatment.

She said: “I’m in constant pain and can’t walk far or drive which means I’ve lost so much independence. My fine motor skills have been affected and I’m always tired. Whatever energy I have, I save for my family.

“Coming to Fair Havens gets me out of the house and is the only thing I really do by myself. I’ve met new friends who understand my situation. My husband has also benefited from carers support. Everyone is so welcoming, and the activities are so relaxing, I don’t think about anything else. At the hospice, I can get away from everything and be myself.”

The hospice is a huge part of Amanda’s and her family’s life. The mum-of-one continues, “Without the funding, the hospice wouldn’t be able to do any of the things that they do for us. I am so proud of Jay, Crystal, Simon and Callam for taking on this challenge of a skydive and I really hope we can raise as much money as we can for a fantastic cause.”

The team has already raised more than £700 but hopes to continue to raise more as they know first-hand how generous donations make such a difference.

It’s thanks to the support from the community that Havens Hospices can continue providing free hospice care to those who need it now and in the future.

To support the team with their fundraiser for Havens Hospices please visit www.justgiving.com/page/amanda-freemantle-1679857739372

Havens Hospices is looking for more thrill-seekers to take part in its next skydiving event on 9th September 2023. For more information and to sign up visit www.havenshospices.org.uk/events

Published 10th May 2023

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Crystal, Simon, Amanda, Jason