More than 1,000 runners and walkers raised over £27,000 when they laced up their shoes for a fantastic cause: to remember Joel Richards, and smile.
19 year-old Joel was killed in last year’s Tunisia beach attacks, along with his uncle, Adrian, and grandfather, Patrick. His mother, Suzy, has been supported by Victim Support since the attacks, in which she lost her son, brother and father in one day.
In a show of incredible strength, Suzy has turned her loss into an amazing fundraising effort, all in Joel’s name.
Smile for Joel aims to raise money for families and loved ones affected by murder and manslaughter, with all proceeds going to Victim Support. To date, Suzy has raised more than £45,000 in through different fundraising events across the West Midland and will be put towards providing relief and respite for families and loved ones affected by murder and manslaughter.
The fun run at Sandwell Valley Country Park raised over £27,000 through race entry fees and sponsorship, raffles and cake sales.
BBC West Midlands provided live coverage of the event, and ITV Birmingham came down to film and interview runners. The event has attracted considerable support with Marc Albrighton from Leicester City FC, Scouting for Girls, and Adam Ricketts sending messages of support.
Suzy said: “It’s been fantastic; I’m absolutely overwhelmed at how many people came. The queues of people waiting to join in at the start were unbelievable. The people here at Sandwell Valley Country Park say it’s one of the biggest events like this they’ve had here, and they would like us to do it again.”
Want to support Smile for Joel?
Stay up to date with all of Smile for Joel’s latest events and activities on Facebook and Twitter. You can also donate to Smile for Joel via JustGiving. If you’d like to know more about Smile for Joel contact Smileforjoel@aol.com or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Would you like to take part in a fundraising event for Victim Support? Email us at email@example.com.