'Defib Derby' charity football match in Grantham helps to buy defibrillator at Harrowby United and raises money for British Heart Foundation
A charity football match held at the weekend raised £1,500 to buy a defibrillator for a local club, with a further £752 donated charity.
On Sunday, N.S.K Dons, a police affiliated charity football team, took on British Heart Foundation FC in a charity match named The Defib Derby.
The aim of the match was to raise money for Harrowby United FC to purchase a community defibrillator, whilst also raising awareness around the importance of CPR and defibrillation.
The match was arranged by N.S.K Dons founding member Jon Smyth, and met the fundraising target of £1,500 before the match was even played, allowing Jon to present the defibrillator and secure cabinet at Dickens Road last Wednesday to Arrows chairman, Mick Atter.
This meant that all of the £752 raised on Sunday went to the British Heart Foundation, with £2,252 raised in total.
A special guest at the match was three-year-old Tommy Smith, who survived a cardiac arrest aged 11 months old, thanks to his dad Neil Smith who saved his life through the use of CPR.
Neil, who was once signed to Notts County FC was a football fanatic and his life was remembered before kick off with a minutes silence, along with 17-year-old Dylan Rich, who tragically died of a cardiac arrest recently whilst playing in a youth team match in Nottingham.
N.S.K Dons fielded a slightly more veteran side in comparison to BHF, benefited from some young and quick players and, despite some fine goalkeeping by N.S.K Dons Chris Clarke, BHF found themselves comfortably 5-0 up at half time.
In the second half, N.S.K Dons were able to finally break through the BHF defence to score a consolation goal through James O'Reilly with a tap in after some good work initially by Harrowby United manager Jamie McGhee in midfield. The game finished 9-1 to BHF with some strong performances on both sides.
Grantham Estate Agent and well known community ambassador Tony Ruby was on hand to select and present a man of the match award to N.S.K Dons goalkeeper Chris Clarke who was kept busy all afternoon by the sheer attacking might of BHF.
Special guest Tommy was presented with his own mini N.S.K Dons football kit donated by the team, whilst BHF FC founder Gary Burr presented him with a Lincoln City shirt.
In an act of generosity, both teams agreed to donate the winners trophy to Tommy in a mark of remembrance and respect for his dad, Neil.
Jon thanked everyone who donated and supported the event, while thanking Harrowby United for the use of their facilities.
He said: "It's been an absolute privilege to arrange and host this event.
"The reaction from young Tommy made everything worthwhile and I'm so grateful to everyone who took part, got involved, donated and supported us.
"As a Harrowby United supporter myself, it fills me with immense pride to know we've been able to do something positive for the club that will also benefit the local community and ultimately save lives."