The sky’s the limit for Health and Food Safety Manager Mark James as he takes up the challenge to raise thousands of pounds by taking to the skies for a charity skydive on the 29th July, and all in aid of UK children’s charity Winston’s Wish.

Mark, who works for multi temperature distribution business Oakland International, is always looking for new ways to challenge himself and push the boundaries, both in work and in life in general.

After chatting with his wife about the possibility of doing a 15,000 foot skydive for his fortieth birthday – currently he’s only 35, last Christmas she surprised him with a 7,000 foot skydiving present, which started the idea of raising money for charity.

Said Mark: “I’ve never jumped out of a perfectly serviceable aeroplane before, and it really does go against the grain as a health and safety professional but knowing that there are so many children throughout the UK dealing with the loss of a parent is heart breaking, and if I am able to achieve just one percent of my overall fundraising goal of a million pounds it will be amazing!”

Although not personally experiencing bereavement as a child, Mark is very close to his sister following their parents’ divorce when he was only seven. And as their father worked hard to be both mum and dad, it meant he and his sister didn’t see very much of him during that time.

A natural philanthropist, Mark donates his time and professional expertise to help a range of causes and children’s charities including Winston’s Wish and supporting Redditch and Bromsgrove charity the Oakland Foundation. Mark is now working hard to raise awareness and gain pledges of support and donations for his skydive from family, friends and work colleagues.

Added Mark: “By facing my fears and jumping out of a plane, if I am able to achieve just  one percent of my fundraising goal, which is a staggering ten thousand pounds – it will be an amazing personal achievement before I’m forty and definitely a new and memorable way of celebrating our July wedding anniversary.”

Winston’s Wish was set up in the UK in 1992 and was the first charity to establish child bereavement support services in the UK, with their aim to meet the needs of bereaved children and their families by providing specialist child bereavement support and in-depth therapeutic services.

The charity needs to raise £2.6 million annually to help support children, young people and their families after the death of a parent or sibling, and with 41,000 UK children bereaved every year and more than 100 children bereaved every day, Winston’s Wish is actively supporting 40,000 children  every year.  Please visit: for more information and to make a donation to help Mark reach his fundraising goal.

Oakland International Limited 

UK: +44 (0) 1527 596 222 

Twitter: @OaklandIntUK

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