When there’s a crisis, Jim Wilson is used to being the one to help others.
But recently, the Newtown community has stepped in to help him in a time of need. Wilson is suffering from kidney failure and has been on a transplant list for more than four years. The father of three is currently ineligible to receive the transplant because he needs to meet physical requirements first.
In order to save his life, Wilson, who receives dialysis three days a week, needed to quit his three jobs and focus on getting healthy as soon as possible so he could get the transplant.
His family recently reached out to the Newtown Athletic Club, where he has been a member since 1999, asking if there was any way they could help with a fundraiser.
What the club offered was beyond their wildest expectations.
The NAC launched a donation campaign that as of Thursday has raised $50,000—far exceeding its initial goal of $36,000. The money will allow Wilson to survive financially during the six months he’ll be taking off from work.
One member gave $2,500. Many gave $1,000 and hundreds gave other denominations. What it amounted to has given Wilson the ability to stop working and focus on saving his life.
Additionally, the club has offered a free membership, personal training services and nutrition consulting to Wilson so he can get in the physical shape needed to ensure the transplant is a success.
Plus, on June 28, the NAC is hosting a fundraising event called “Help Us Help Jim Wilson.” The event, at the club's outdoor pool complex, will feature food, drinks and entertainment. It is open to the public.
Tickets are $50 a person, $100 a family or $25 per child. All money raised will go to help Wilson. The party starts at 7 p.m.
Through the fundraiser, the club hopes to raise additional money to help Jim on his lifesaving journey.
“I am truly honored and truly humbled,” Wilson said in a video on the NAC’s website. ”I'm a chaplain and I'm used to working with people and giving of myself to others to and help them meet the crises in their life. For once this is an opportunity for people to come to my aid and help me,” he said.