FC Halifax Town player, Joe Skarz, is taking part in 24 hour cycle challenge just hours after he will be on the pitch playing in the teams match with Barrow on Saturday (December 15) to raise funds for Alzheimer’s Society.
Joe, and friend Josh Taylor, who runs Unit Fitness in Honley, where the cycle challenge is taking place, is also doing a 24 hour rowing challenge in aid of the charity.
Joe, 29, has family experience of dementia, with his Nan, Patricia, living with the disease and his grandad, who died in 2014, also being affected.
Joe said: “Like ours, so many families are touched by this dreadful disease and I decided I wanted to do something to raise funds and awareness of dementia. I can’t usually sleep after the excitement of a match so just thought why not head straight back to the gym and get on a static bike straight away!
“It’s great to think that I will be raising funds to help support people living with dementia now and to fund research to one day find a cure for dementia.
“We are hoping that local people will get behind us, call in and support us at the gym to and donate to the fund.”
Local business, Delivita, will also be making stone-fired pizzas outside the gym between 5pm and 8pm on Friday 14, in support of the 24 hour challenge, with all profits donated to Alzheimer’s Society.
Josh also has a personal reason for tackling a 24 hour row – his fiancée, Sophie's grandmother has dementia.
Josh said: “This is the second rowing challenge that I have done – last time I rowed for 26 miles in aid of Mind – so I am going one step further and tackling 24 hours on the rowing machine.
“My family has been raising money for Alzheimer’s Society during the last year and when I heard about Joe’s cycle challenge I decided to join him – not enough people know about dementia and the impact it has on families, so I just want to do my bit to raise some funds and awareness of what Alzheimer’s Society does to support people.
“It will be a physical and mental challenge getting through as rowing is a bit boring, but I am setting myself personal targets along the way to keep me going.”
Alzheimer's Society, Community Fundraiser for West Yorkshire, Ju Lee, said: “It’s wonderful that Joe and Josh are taking on this amazing challenge to support Alzheimer’s Society – it sounds exhausting but they are both super fit, so I am sure they will succeed!
“Dementia devastates lives, but dementia won’t win. Until the day we find a cure we will be here for anyone affected by dementia, wherever they are, whatever they’re going through.“
Josh is taking on his rowing challenge on Friday and will be joined by Joe after the Halifax v Barrow match on Saturday.
To donate to Joe and Josh anyone can call in at the gym or visit www.justgiving.com/fundraising/joe-skarz24hourwattbike or www.justgiving.com/fundraising/jtrow24