A West Leeds family are celebrating after raising more than £8,000 for Sue Ryder Wheatfields Hospice from a charity football match.
Hundreds of people headed to the home ground of Wortley FC to watch the special match, which was organised by Bobby Wisher and his family in memory of his dad, Robert.
Robert, who had been diagnosed with vascular dementia and throat cancer in 2019, received expert palliative care and support at the Headingley hospice in his final days in January 2021.
“When our dad was admitted into Sue Ryder Wheatfields Hospice for end-of-life care it was incredibly difficult, and made even harder as there were COVID restrictions in place at the time which meant we were not able to see him.
“Despite this, the Sue Ryder Nurses were so helpful through the process and did everything they could for him. They were there for all of us and offered help and advice to relieve some of the pressure on our mum, which we all appreciated so much. This is why we wanted to organise the football match to give something back to them to thank them.”
The two teams competing against each other in the charity match were made up of Leeds families who have recently experienced the loss of a loved one – the Wishers and the Crosbys vs the Birstalls and the Martins.
Cheered on by the hoards of spectators, the two sides played out a thrilling 2-2 draw, with the Wisher and Crosby family team winning on penalties.
In addition to the match, there were a range of other activities throughout the day including a bouncy castle, beer van and a BBQ.
Later in the evening a raffle was held at The Nag’s Head pub in Farnley which included a host of prizes from local business as well as football shirts signed by Wortley’s Kalvin Phillips, Stuart Dallas and the Leeds United team.
Bobby and his family presented a cheque for £8,837 to Sue Ryder Wheatfields Hospice on Saturday 11 June. Bobby said:
“I’d like to thank my family, friends and everyone in the community who was involved in making the match such a huge success. It was a great day to remember dad and we are overwhelmed by the money we have raised for such a worthy cause.”
Michelle Darbyshire, Community Fundraiser at Sue Ryder Wheatfields Hospice, added: “We’re so grateful to Bobby and his family for pulling together to organise this brilliant charity match to support our hospice. The amount raised is truly incredible and will make a huge difference in helping us to continue to be there when it matters for local families going through the most difficult times of their lives.”
You can still donate to the fundraising page here.