Sponsor Phil Packer on his 25th mile for RYA Sailability.

RYA Sailability is due to receive a cash boost courtesy of Major Phil Packer who is aiming to walk the Virgin London Marathon in April to raise money for charity. He will be aiming to complete the course in 26 hours with each of the 26 miles being on behalf of a different good cause. RYA Sailability is his nominated charity for the 25th mile.

After sustaining a spinal cord Injury in February 2008 and during his rehabilitation in hospital at Headley Court, Major Phil Packer decided to embark upon numerous physical challenges to raise funds for charity and raise awareness of the charities he supports.

His three main challenges in 2009 included rowing the Channel with Al Humphreys, walking the London Marathon over 14 days and hauling himself up El Capitan with a support team of some of the country’s best climbers. Phil inspired millions and gained unexpected National recognition, including Fundraiser of the Year at the Pride of Britain Awards and the Helen Rollason Award at the BBC Sports Personality of the Year.

Inspired in turn by those he has met on his journey, Phil is embarking on a new life to dedicate his time and energy to supporting young people and young people with disabilities. Working with the advice and partnerships of Disability Organisations and Charities, his intent is to provide an opportunity of hope for young people with disabilities between the ages of 16 and 25.

RYA Sailability is the governing body of disabled sailing in the UK and because of its good work has gained the support of ambassadors around the UK including Phil Packer, Geoff Holt, Helena Lucas and Keith Harris.

The charity operates through 200 sites in the UK and helps over 25,000 disabled people to participate in the sport of sailing at various skill levels. This includes the ‘Beginner to Winner’ initiative that takes people from novices through to elite sailing and for some onto Paralympics level. Making all of this possible is a team of over 6,000 volunteers.

RYA Sailability has grown in recent years while managing still to keep administration costs below 5% meaning that nearly all donations go directly to the front line.

The charity in the last two years has recruited new trustees who have been hard at work securing new sponsors, grants and expanding personal giving opportunities. All of this has had a dramatic effect of the activities the charity supports.  

It has also been fortunate enough to continue to gain financial support from donors. There are many people who have become inspired by the amazing work carried out at the sites and have consequently become regular donors as well as in some cases becoming involved in volunteering.

One of those people is Phil Packer. Phil will begin his latest challenge at 10am on 25th April and is due to finish at 12pm on the 26th April.  

To continue his intent to aim and inspire young people with disability, deprived young people and to support injured service personnel, he will walk each mile with a support walker between the ages of 16 and 25. The support walker for each leg will be nominated by each charity and the support walker for RYA Sailability will be Alexandra Rickham, Paralympic SKUD sailor.

For more information on Phil’s remarkable challenge, visit www.philpacker.com.

For all RYA Sailability enquiries please contact: Morna Hughes 02380 604249. Morna.hughes@ryasailability.org  

Alternatively, to donate direct to RYA Sailability please visit www.justgiving.com/rya or https://uk.virginmoneygiving.com