Taekwondo sparathon drought relief challenge

EVERYBODY was taekwondo fighting and the dollars were adding up fast as lightning, when Fit-For-It Taekwondo held a sparathon at the weekend.

Students of the Oxley Vale martial arts school completed 104 rounds of 90 seconds of sparring, raising about $3500 for drought relief charity R U Aware We Care.

Chief instructor David Jackson said the idea was the school’s unique way of contributing.

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And one special money-spinner with him and his 17-year-old son and assistant instructor, Sean Chen, had been particularly fun.

“I put a $5 participation fee on it for students but made it voluntary, and friends and family sponsored them for the amount of rounds they would fight on the day,” Mr Jackson said.

“I also sponsored each student $1 per round they fought.

“But then a couple of nights before the event, I had another idea: I thought, ‘What if they want to spar us?’ … pay $20 to fight me for three minutes and $10 for two minutes.

“I ended up having 11 fights and Sean had 12.

“The parents were just throwing money at us to fight their children; for the littlest kids to fight my son, who is 181cm tall – it was hilarious.”

He hastened to add everyone had been wearing protective gear and no children were harmed in the raising of the money.

Students’ parents also held a sausage sizzle, raising $240.

Mr Jackson said he had been inspired to hold a fundraiser after seeing people’s drought struggles in the news and for himself.

“My sister has a little farm at Moonbi ... she’s struggling to get hay for her animals, and I was thinking what can I do to raise money for the farmers.”

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