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Estate agents take plunge raising £20k for rare condition charity in Harpenden

PUBLISHED: 21:00 13 October 2018

The Jarvis Homes skydiving team, in aid of the A-T Society. Picture: Kate McEleney

The Jarvis Homes skydiving team, in aid of the A-T Society. Picture: Kate McEleney

Archant

A team of brave Harpenden estate agents raised £20,000 in charity sponsorship by facing their fear of heights.

The Jarvis Homes skydiving team, in aid of the A-T Society. Picture: Kate McEleneyThe Jarvis Homes skydiving team, in aid of the A-T Society. Picture: Kate McEleney

Twenty-eight Javis Homes employees signed up for a skydive at Wimblington’s North London Skydive Centre, in aid of the A-T Society, which funds research into ataxia-telangiectasia (A-T) and supports those with the condition.

There were three people with A-T who also joined the Jarvis Homes team on September 27.

More than £8,500 has been raised on their collection page, but donations total about £20,000 including sponsorship.

A-T is a disabling condition affecting between one in 40,000 and one in 100,000 people worldwide. The hereditary disease occurs if both parents have a particular recessive mutated gene.

It is degenerative and patients rarely live past their 20s.

CEO of Jarvis Homes, Mike Peters, was inspired to jump by 20-year-old A-T sufferer Ebony Robinson, who was the first wheelchair user to take part in The One Show’s Ricksaw Challenge for BBC’s Children in Need two years ago.

Ebony joined the Jarvis team in order to tick skydiving off her bucket list. She said: “The A-T Society is a charity very close to my heart and I would like to do all I can to raise money for them by jumping out of a plane at 15,000ft!

“I’m scared of heights so this is a huge challenge for me, however, I’m never one to back down from a challenge and always want to have a go at conquering my fears.”

Mike met Ebony at a dinner in support of the A-T Society, hosted by Harpenden and Hitchin MP Bim Afolami.

He was terrified of the skydive: “I was very moved by what Ebony told me about living with A-T. Her courage inspired me to put aside my own fears and sign up to make the jump.”

Jarvis skydive team members also included Michael Margereson, Andy Driver, Matt Pattinson, Peter Rudge, Gabriel Sanni and Simon Robb.

Symptoms of A-T include slurred speech, slow eye movements, a weakened immune system, an increased risk of cancer, and difficulty walking – most children need a wheelchair by 10 years old.

Donate at mydonate.bt.com/fundraisers/jarvishomesskydive

Find out more about the A-T Society at www.atsociety.org.uk

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