Football dads reach goal of sending young cancer sufferer to Disney World after Bassingbourn match fundraiser
PUBLISHED: 12:12 01 June 2016 | UPDATED: 12:12 01 June 2016
A group of dads who played in a football fundraiser in Bassingbourn are thrilled after the match raised more than £1,300.
And their efforts mean the family of five-year-old cancer sufferer Izzi Ferns can afford a once in a lifetime trip to Disney World – even though their team lost 5-1 on the day.
Talha Juneja organised the game which saw his Weaintright Utd team – whose players all have children at Royston Town FC U11s – take on a Bassingbourn side on the village’s recreation ground.
Talha said: “The day went really well. The icing on the cake for me was when all the players got together to form two lines in their teams, clapping Izzy and her mum Kerry through the tunnel – like a guard of honour.
“It was really emotional and members of both teams looked choked up.”
The fundraising friendly wasn’t without its drama, when Talha’s teammate Simon Taylor was caught by an innocent challenge and broke his ankle two minutes before half -time. “Simon insisted we play on,” Talha said.
The self-employed plasterer has since had two operations and the team are looking for ways to help him out while he is unable to work.
On the day there was also a barbecue, inflatable slide, face painting, lots of games and competitions for the children, as well as a raffle with prizes donated by local businesses.
Talha would like to thank Master Fryer for donating the barbecue food, Toby from The Heath in Royston for providing the BBQ equipment, Ashiana Spice for the kind donations and accommodating the teams for a post-match meal, staff at Hitchin Girls’ School for raising more than £200 in sponsorship, Primary Care People for the Weaintright’s kits and Bassingbourn Parish Council for supplying the venue.
Talha added: “We are a community united by one cause – a little girl most of the community don’t even know – and we’re proud to be part of this effort to send Izzi to Disney.”