Daredevils Alice Rush, Andrew Darby and Christian Campbell-Warner are gearing up for an adrenaline-fuelled challenge that will see them take part in a tandem skydive to raise money for pioneering dementia research.
The trio, who work for AXA Insurance’s Ipswich office, hope to raise hundreds for Alzheimer’s Research UK when they take part in the charity’s National Skydive Day this summer.Staff from AXA Insurance have been raising money as part of a three-year partnership with the UK’s leading dementia research charity that began in April 2015. In their first year, employees from the firm’s head office and network of regional offices have already raised over £111,000 towards their £250,000 target with a range of fundraising challenges. The latest event in June will see Alice, Andrew and Christian face their fears and jump from 13,000ft, travelling to Ellough Airfield in Beccles, Suffolk to join other fundraisers who are taking the plunge in support of Alzheimer’s Research UK.
As part of National Skydive Day, the charity is offering 150 tandem skydive places at eight locations across the country. Participants will be aided by professional skydivers and will feel part of a team as they all make the jump at 8am on Saturday 4 June.
“All three of us are on AXA’s Finance Graduate Scheme, and taking part in the skydive seemed like a great way to demonstrate what a committed group the Graduates are. I’ve never really done anything like this – the closest I’ve come is jumping off a mountain with a parachute, but that’s not really the same thing at all. I’ve always wanted to do a skydive but I needed to persuade someone to sign up with me, and as Andrew and Christian are my housemates as well as my work colleagues, of course I asked them.”
“AXA staff have been raising money for Alzheimer’s Research UK for the last year and so it was natural for us to support the charity. My girlfriend’s grandfather has dementia, so I’ve seen the effect the condition can have and it’s a really important cause to get behind. There’s a lot of research going on into other conditions like cancer, but there needs to be more for dementia, especially with our ageing population.”
“As Graduates with AXA we wanted to be really proactive, and doing a skydive looked like a fantastic challenge. I’m nervous about the jump, but the appeal of doing something like this is the exhilaration you get from the adrenaline hit. Our colleagues have been really supportive, everyone at AXA is always generous when people are doing crazy fundraising challenges like this, so if we can raise lots of money for Alzheimer’s Research UK that’s even better.”
Vicky Naylor, Corporate Partnerships Officer at Alzheimer’s Research UK, said:
“We’re thrilled that Alice, Andrew and Christian are taking on this amazing challenge for us and we’ll be wishing them well on the day. The money raised by AXA staff is making a real difference to our pioneering research, helping to fund vital resources and equipment for our scientists.
“Currently 850,000 people are living with dementia in the UK, including over 11,000 people in Suffolk alone, and we urgently need new ways to fight the condition. We rely on public donations to be able to fund our research, and it’s thanks to our brilliant supporters like the team at AXA that we’re able to continue our work.”
To sponsor the group visit https://crowdfunding.justgiving.com/AXAGraduatesSkydive. To sign up to take part in Alzheimer’s Research UK’s National Skydive Day, visit www.alzheimersresearchuk.org/fundraising/skydive or call 0300 111 5555.