To help raise money to provide a service dog to assist a Gainsborough woman’s son, who has autism and ADHD, youngsters filled their wellington boots with jelly and set off on a walk.
Samantha Walford has three children who all suffer from autism and present their own individuals traits and challenges.
Her son, Charley, who is four-years-old, has a tendency to ‘bolt’ without any warning.
Samantha said: “We can be walking down the street and, in an instant, with no warning at all, he can slip out of your hand before you get chance to tighten your grip.”
He has outgrown his buggy and his reins are becoming a bit tight now.”
Samantha heard about Service Dogs Europe which focuses on improving the quality of life for families of children and adults living with autism.
A service dog would be ideal as Charley will be connected to the dog by a belt around his waist and when Charley attempts to ‘bolt’ the dog is trained to sit or lie down and act as an anchor.
Samantha is now fundraising to raise the money needed to get a service dog for Charley.
Samantha said: “We have had a busy week, on Wednesday 27th May we did a Jelly Welly Walk.”
“We had 19 kids come and walk around a field with ladles full of jelly in their wellies. Even some of the adults joined in just for fun.”
“Then we had a picnic together after everyone got cleaned up and medals were presented to reward the kids for their help.”
“We banked £407 on the day and have more to come.”
“Then on Saturday 30th May we were bag packing at Tesco in Gainsborough.”
“We had a group of girls singing at the front while we were on tills.”
“They helped raise half of the money raised that day which was £470.11.”
“We have also had some plates made very kindly by Fun Printz in Gainsborough, for another fundraising idea.”
“The plates have a picture of Charley on them and the fundraising page and the idea is I bake a cake, give it to a friend who eats the cake and donates, then they bake a cake and pass it on to another friend who eats and donates and so on. We’re calling it ‘Pass the cake plate’. We have around 10 being passed around different areas.”
“And we also won two tickets for the Three Peaks Challenge in Yorkshire, which is fantastic and have some friends offering to take part to raise money.”
Back in March Samantha’s sister Laura Smith and friend Rachel Tutty ran the Lincoln 10k and managed to raise more than £800.
If you would like to make a donation to Charley and help him get the assistance and support he needs visit www.ifundraise.ie/fundraiser/32394_charleybears-brakes.html.