Businesses back man’s mission to raise charity cash

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BUSINESSES have shown their support for a greiving man’s mission to raise money and awareness for a support charity in memory of his brother. 

Eugene Scardifield, from Hayling Island, is raising money for SAMM, which stands for Support After Murder and Manslaughter, a nationwide charity that offers support to those bereaved by murder or manslaughter.

Eugene’s brother, Michael Scardifield, 40 – who grew up in Portsmouth – was strangled by his friend 29-year-old Martin Birchall in Stoke-on-Trent in May, 2015. 

Dad-of-four Eugene has coped with his loss by throwing himself into a campaign of fundraising for the charity, to help others going through similar situations. 

He cycled 226 miles in two days from Portsmouth to the Samm retreat in Crewe raising nearly £7,000 in 2017, and subsequently became a trustee for Samm. 

His latest fundraising effort saw him take on the Three Peaks Challenge, scaling Ben Nevis, Scafell Pike and Snowdon on September 1. Despite 30mph wind and rain, and poor visibility, he finished his challenge dubbed Mountains for Michael in 24 hours and 25 minutes.

Eugene said: ‘It was very tough.’ 

The latest challenge has raised more than £1,300 – with more money yet to come in. 

Several Hayling Island businesses – Studio 6, Wainwright Estates, Island Pizza and P Croft Roofing  – have got behind Eugene’s efforts with sponsorship. 

Eugene, a gas engineer, said: ‘Trying to raise money and awareness for a charity like Samm is tough as they’re not a pink and fluffy charity because it’s surrounding murder and manslaughter.

‘There is always an elephant in the room because of the stigma.

‘Having these amazing companies contact me offering sponsor money and wanting to support my efforts is truly overwhelming and massively appreciated.

‘It really does epitomise community spirit in a time of need.

‘Samm gets limited funding so every penny really does count for this charity. I can’t thank them all enough from the bottom of my broken heart.’ 

Eugene plans to hold another fundraiser next year, potantially taking on an open water swim challenge. 

To donate go to mydonate.bt.com/fundraisers/eugenescardifield2?page=3