AN ocean-therapy charity has raised more than £45,000 to cover additional costs associated with its inclusive surf centre after hosting a ‘sleigh relay’ across St Aubin’s Bay.
Healing Waves – an organisation which offers Islanders with disabilities or health conditions the chance to enjoy the sea through a variety of adapted water sports – pushed its adapted Christmas-themed surfboard along Victoria Avenue’s cycle path from 4pm till 4am on Saturday night.
The charity has raised £22,590 through donations so far and the sum has been matched by the DWE Trust, bringing the total to £45,180. The money will go towards building costs for its new centre at Le Braye car park in St Ouen’s Bay.
The project received a £411,000 grant from the government’s Fiscal Stimulus Fund but the group has had to come up with fundraising initiatives to cover unforeseen additional costs.
Max Wiltshire, co-founder of the charity, said: ‘So many people came down to support us, pulled the sleigh, brought some Christmas cheer or donated and we are beyond grateful. Everyone helped carry us and the sleigh. This event really showed what an awesome community we have in Jersey.’
He added: ‘Myself, Dom and Seán [fellow co-founders] walked and pulled the sleigh for 12 hours, clocking up 28 miles and 62,000 steps in the process. We are going to leave the fundraising page open until Christmas Day if anyone else would like to donate. Every little helps and means the world to us.’
The charity will also be hosting a Christmas Day swim at Le Braye from 10am to raise additional funds.
Mr Wiltshire added: ‘The ground-clearance work for the surf centre is complete and we are hoping construction will start in January with a view to completing it before the 2022 summer season.’
To donate to the sleigh relay fundraiser, search for ‘Healing Waves Sleigh Relay’ on gofundme.com.