A WOLVERHAMPTON man who ran the London Marathon to raise money for children with disabilities revealed he has sold the space on his buttocks for a permanent tattoo to boost charity funds.
Jonathan Green was 21 stone and decided to do something about it and was determined to pound the roads at a quicker pace than his friend Dave Anson. He became part of the Wolverhampton Running Network and took part in last year’s Great Birmingham Run – his first competitive race.
The “Jolly Mr Green Giant” who is six foot seven inches tall and now weighs in at around 19 stone had months running the Wolverhampton streets before getting close to Dave’s times and in the end Mr Anson has taken up the offer and will have his name tattooed on one of Jonathan’s buttocks.
“Dave offered £200 and I am going to put ‘David Anson’ inside a love heart,” quipped the gentle giant.
“When the word got round that I was having my rear tattooed a lot of sponsors came forward and my Just Giving page took a boost. I am still looking to raise more money but I am pleased that I have got over £3,000 for a really good cause, Newlife Foundation for Disabled Children, after targeting £2,500.”
Jonathan became a social media sensation on the afternoon, evening and following day of the 26-mile London Marathon when he appeared to help a damsel in distress. Bearded Colin Plews in a three stone pink dress and pink locks was about to stop running at 12 miles and say goodbye to his fundraising fortune, but the Jolly Mr Green Giant insisted his new mate would complete the course and would not run without his new running mate.
He suffered with Achilles tendon and knee problems, which he never experience in training, but helped the bearded lady over the line.
“I just cannot explain how much this means to me, completing the course. Colin says it was all down to me, but he kept me going,” he said.
“If you tell someone they can do it – they often do.
“The London Marathon’s 26.2 mile course is a long way, I can tell you. The breathing goes and then the crowd lift you, they chant your name and you feel good.
“I got over the line and thought well done – you can’t believe it.
“I called a loved one. They phone you back and you can’t answer it because you are crying.”
Every penny that Jonathan raises will be used to help provide vital specialist equipment for children with disabilities and terminal illness.
“I have worked with adults with learning and physical disabilities so I have seen how people struggle for a bit of dignity and to live a decent life,” Jonathan added.
“Specialist disability equipment can often be key to them doing this, so the work that Newlife does is something I am very passionate about.”
Statutory services often have a responsibility to make equipment provision – but when help is declined, Newlife steps in. The charity challenges many such decisions and has an impressive success rate. However, where we are unable to overturn these decisions, we provide the equipment ourselves through our range of grant and loan services. We do this with the support of front-line health professionals across the West Midlands who have helped Newlife help local children in real need.
Newlife supports thousands of families of disabled and terminally ill children throughout the UK through provision of specialist equipment like wheelchairs, beds and communication aids.
In 2013/14 alone, Newlife funded equipment grants totalling £2,088,105 for over 1,300 children, with many more supported through the charity’s emergency equipment loan services.
“I was in London to see Jonathan and the other courageous runners,” added Newlife Deputy Community Fundraising Manager, Philippa Gregory.
“People like Jonathan who are committed to raising money are the key to us continuing to be able to support vulnerable families, as the demand on Newlife equipment services increases.”
For more information about Newlife Foundation, go to www.newlifecharity.co.uk. The Newlife Community Fundraising team can be contacted on 0800 988 4640 (free from UK landlines) or by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org.
All equipment support services can be accessed via the Newlife Nurse Helpline – 0800 902 0095 (free from UK landlines) or email email@example.com.
If you wish to contribute to Newlife through Jonathan’s fund, click on to www.justgiving.com/teamrunjonboyrun.
Pictured: Jonathan Green