First fundraising event for inspirational Ashley

Newspaper: Pontefract & Castleford Express.'Story: Twenty two year old Ashley Kean from Glasshoughton, will be totally blind by his 30th birthday due to suffering from Retinitis Pigmentosa. Ashley is currently looking for ways to raise awareness of the illness as well as raising funds for the RNIB.'Photo Date: 03/03/15
Newspaper: Pontefract & Castleford Express.'Story: Twenty two year old Ashley Kean from Glasshoughton, will be totally blind by his 30th birthday due to suffering from Retinitis Pigmentosa. Ashley is currently looking for ways to raise awareness of the illness as well as raising funds for the RNIB.'Photo Date: 03/03/15

Inspirational Ashley Kean - who was told he will be blind within eight years - is holding a football tournament to raise money to help others who are visually impaired.

Mr Kean, 22, has retinitis pigmentosa, a degenerative eye disease that causes the retina to deteriorate.

He was diagnosed with the condition at the age of 11 and told he would “be lucky” if he still had his sight at 30 .

The former Castleford High School student has organised the tournament to raise cash for Wakefield District Sight Aid.

He said: “I want to raise awareness and help find a cure for blindness as well as raising money for charities that help people who have problems with their sight.

“This will be the first event I’ve held but so far everything is going great.

“I want it to be more than just a football tournament - I want it to be a full family day out.”

The event takes place on the sports fields behind Knottingley Sports Centre, Hill Top on Sunday, June 14.

There will be raffles, stalls and refreshments as well as at least 44 people taking part in the football tournament.

He added: “I’m hoping to get at least 250 people to turn up and support the charity.

“If I can get more than 44 players that would be perfect - the more, the better.”

Mr Kean works at the Wickes distribution centre at Whitwood.

He said: “I’m very lucky to still have good enough sight at the minute to work full-time.”

Mr Kean suffers nighttime blindness as part of his condition.

He added: “It’s quite scary knowing that I’m going to lose my sight but I want to help the charity while I can.”

For more information or to take part in the tournament contact Mr Kean on 07701 298477.

Entry to the tournament costs £5 per player and all proceeds will go to Wakefield District Sight Aid.