A fundraising appeal, launched in support of Norfolk athlete Jessica-Jane Applegate MBE, has received a celebrity boost this week.
Fellow GB swimming star, Ellie Simmonds has donated a series of her new story books for the online auction running as part of the urgent funding campaign.
It was earlier in November that the business community of East Anglia gathered with the likes of Karen Pickering MBE, for a special ‘launch breakfast’ to signal the start of a unique online auction in aid of Jessica Jane’s Tokyo 2020 bid.
Since then, numerous bids have been placed for lots including villa holidays, expert swimming tuition, restaurant meals, fishing days and sports memorabilia.
Ellie’s donation is a welcome addition to the online platform – being hosted by Norfolk firm Sellebrity – and is of personal delight for Jessica-Jane herself.
“I have been on the team with Ellie for many years and have been fortunate to learn a lot of professional skills from her,” she said.
“We have room shared on training camps and I’m overwhelmed that she’s happy to support my fundraising campaign.”
The online auction was launched at the beginning of November, in an event which also featured Karen Pickering MBE, Danny Nobbs and footballer-turned-coach Adrian Forbes.
Jessica-Jane is currently facing a funding shortfall, as she bids to take part in the Tokyo 2020 Paralympics. Norwich-based enterprise agency Nwes kickstarted an appeal in support of the swimmer 12 months ago.
Kevin Horne, CEO of Nwes, and the brainchild behind the Jessica-Jane Applegate Fundraising Campaign, said: “I’m so thrilled with the support we’ve seen for the appeal since the launch of the online auction.
“We’ve had some great prizes offered, and the auction site is seeing more and more traction. Today’s confirmation of the auction-lot from Ellie is yet another great boost, so I hope it will encourage more people to visit the site and place their bids in the final weeks.”
The auction site is live at https://www.sellebrity.org.uk/jessica-jane-applegate-live-auction.
Bids can be placed until 15th December at 7pm.
All money raised will go toward the campaign tally, with Nwes having committed to raise £20,020 every year for Jessica-Jane between now and 2020.