AN unsung hero has been nominated for a Pride of Essex award for his fundraising work with PARC children’s charity.

Aidan Kelly, from Braintree, will be crowned Community Champion at the Pride of Essex awards evening on November 19.

PARC is a charity based in Great Notley Country Park which aims to provide facilities for children with additional needs and short breaks for their families.

Aidan’s son Luke has autism and goes to PARC on a regular basis.

Aidan said: “They are always a big support to us.

“Without donations and all the fundraising they wouldn’t be able to do the work they do.

“They do so much for us as a family.

“The service they provide is a massive help to us.”

Aidan and his wife have taken part in a range of fundraising events in aid of PARC, including multiple marathons.

Mark Allen, a close friend of Aidan, nominated him for the award.

Mark said: “He doesn’t just raise money for PARC, he also raises money for other local charity groups.

“When he found out he won he couldn’t believe it. I don’t know how he keeps all the plates spinning – he does everything.

“As a family they are amazing, and PARC gives them so much support and respite.

“They are amazing for special kids like Luke.”

Frederike Walter from PARC said: “He is really a great help all around.

“Nothing is ever too much for him.

“This nomination just highlights what a fantastic person he is because he has a full-time job as well as doing all this.

“The whole family get involved and are amazing.”

Aidan made it down to the final five in his category and will be attending the awards evening on November 19.

Speaking about the nomination, Aidan said: “I didn’t know anything about it.

“To get down to the last five is massive.

“Even if I didn’t win anything it’s a massive achievement.”

Aidan is training for the 2020 Brighton Marathon to raise money for PARC.