Ian’s fundraising off to n-ice start

The 2012 Seaton Carew Boxing Day Dip: Ian Richardson (middle row, left) and the jo&mya fundraisers who did the dip with him.

The 2012 Seaton Carew Boxing Day Dip: Ian Richardson (middle row, left) and the jo&mya fundraisers who did the dip with him.

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A CHARITY chief is confident his cause will sail through the £100,000 fundraising milestone this year.

Ian Richardson, 40, is planning to step up the drive to raise money and support tragic children, and he is doing it in memory of his wife and eldest daughter who died in a car accident.

But without even lifting a finger, people are already coming to him to organise events.

The latest to be held for the charity which Ian founded is a sponsored ice hockey match to be staged on Sunday, February 3, at the Billingham Forum, between the Billingham Stars and the Solway Sharks.

Ian, a Hartlepool businessman and a Billingham resident, used to play for the former ice hockey team Billingham Bombers for around 20 years.

He said: “This is great. These are the two leading teams in the English National Ice Hockey League.

“There will be collections on the night and they have already raised £700 for the fund. I used to play for the Bombers and one of the guys who worked for me is one of the main players. They said they wanted to do something.” Other events on the night will include collections and a tombola.

Ian has thrown himself into fundraising ever since his wife Joanne, 40, and eldest daughter Mya, aged six, died in a car accident on August 8, 2010.

He and his youngest daughter Ava, now aged two, survived the accident and Ian set up the Jo and Mya Memorial Fund to help children who have lost loved ones.

It supports bereaved children and families affected by death and terminal illness.

Ian himself is planning a series of 2013 fundraising events including a climb up Ben Nevis, a 19,340ft trek to the top of Kilimanjaro planned for later this year, the Great North Run, and the annual yomp up Roseberry Topping.

So far, he has raised around £60,000 for the charity but he said: “I think we shall definitely top £100,000 this year.”

Ian, who won an Award For Inspiration in the Mail’s first Pride of Hartlepool Awards, was nominated to carry the Olympic Flame ahead of the London games last year.

Anyone wanting to find out more information should visit www.joandmya.co.uk