A local teenager, Joshua Hooks, has so far raised an amazing £1,100 for us charity by devising a 24-hour online gaming marathon. Joshua, a 14-year old Notley High School student, chose Hope House Essex as he is aware of the charity’s work through his volunteering as part of his Duke of Edinburgh Award with 158 (Braintree & District) Squadron ATC. Joshua discussed the difficulties that homeless people are experiencing during the COVID-19 pandemic with his parents and came up with the fundraising idea.
When Joshua decided to go ahead with his fundraising marathon, he showed great maturity and business skills by launching a publicity campaign on 5th May in readiness for the event, which was planned to start at 9am on Saturday 16th May. Initially, he set himself a target of raising £300 for the charity and pledged to shave his head if the target was achieved. The campaign was so successful that by the time Joshua started his marathon, the head shaving was already scheduled as part of the event and was live streamed on Facebook for his supporters to see.
After the event, Joshua took some well-earned sleep by which time the total was over £800. When he woke up after a few hours, the total had smashed through the £1,000 barrier and continues to climb. Speaking after the event, Joshua said, “I never would have imagined raising the amount that we did and I didn’t even think that we would reach the goal, so it was a big shock to me when I checked back and saw the amount raised.”
Describing the moment that Joshua shaved all his hair off, his Mum, Claire said “that was real highlight for Joshua, but it did make me cry. I am a super-proud Mum!” Joshua’s JustGiving page is at https://www.justgiving.com/crowdfunding/gamingforhomlessness for anyone that would like to add to his amazing total.