A leading UK children’s disability charity is saying a huge New Year ‘thank you’ to the villagers of Hemyock and the surrounding area who have raised thousands of pounds to help disabled and terminally ill children in the county.
Newlife CEO Sheila Brown, OBE, said:”We have been overwhelmed by the commitment and generosity of local residents who are supporting the fundraising appeal Sam’s Legacy, which was launched in memory of popular Hemyock teenager Sam Allen, who died last year (2014) after a brave battle with cancer.
“Sam’s Legacy was launched at the beginning of October with the support of his family and already the money raised has helped provide essential equipment for two children; little Maddie Bell in Willand and Alex Hikins in Torquay, who both took delivery in time for Christmas. We are now working with a third child, Marshall Starholm from Plymouth, whose specialist seating will also be provided with support from Sam’s Legacy.
“Every single person who has donated is a true ‘local hero’, and – on behalf of our Newlife families – I would like to say thank you to everyone in Hemyock and the surrounding area who has got involved and wish them a ‘Happy New Year’.”
The total raised through Sam’s Legacy currently stands at more than £5,000. This has resulted from a variety of events including:
Coffee morning arranged by Sam’s family at their home in Hemyock
Christmas draw in the village Spar shop
Carols in Hemyock village square
‘Sparkle parties’ – jewellery sales with stock provided through Newlife’s social enterprise business
In memoriam donation
Village cake sale
Newlife needs £40,000 a year to continue its support of disabled and terminally ill children in Devon through equipment provision. Looking ahead to February, Honiton Pantomime Society will be supporting Sam’s Legacy with collections at the end of each of its performances of Sleeping Beauty at The Beehive community arts centre in the town.
The show – from Tuesday 17 February to Saturday 21 February – promises a timeless tale packed with colourful characters, sensational songs and lots of laughter. If you would like to do your bit to help disabled and terminally ill children in Devon, call The Beehive box office on 01404 384 050 and book your seats now. Tickets are £8 for adults and £6 for children 16 and under; family tickets are £25.
Newlife Foundation for Disabled Children supported Sam Allen in his final months by providing the loan of a mobility scooter so he could maintain his independence as long as possible. Mum Nicky Allen said: “The scooter was absolutely amazing. Sam was using it within an hour of its arrival and the grin on his face was worth millions to us. The independence it gave him was immense. All the things other people take for granted were suddenly given back to him. In a nutshell, it made him feel more normal.”
She added: “Helping other families get the specialist equipment they need is a comfort to us – and would have made Sam very proud.”
Pictured: Sam Allen