In 2013, 4 year old Oliver Dickey, from Coleraine, who suffers from cerebral palsy, was nominated to join us on our fantasy flight to Lapland. He and his chum, Ethan Pollock, who lives with spina bifida, had an absolute ball and, typical of these young men decided that they wanted to give something back.
They hoped to raise around £1000, so that another child could experience this once in a lifetime trip.
Incredibly, they decided to swim the equivalent of the width of the English Channel, in the swimming pool of Coleraine Grammar School and, over 6 months of Wednesday evenings, they swam no fewer than 1400 lengths.
Their efforts really captured the imagination of the local community and, indeed, the TV cameras were there to record the moment they completed their challenge – and a whopping £12.000 was raised in the process.
Oliver’s mum, Charlene, became a fully committed volunteer on our very active North Coast fundraising committee. She has been a driving force for many of our events since then, including abseiling down the Europa Hotel this year.
Charlene’s perspective as the mum of a child with medical issues and the impact this has on a family is a very useful addition and will greatly inform the Management Board deliberations moving forward.