THE generosity of Observer readers has been shining through this week as they flock to help a little boy walk.
Thomas Jenkinson, who celebrated his fifth birthday on November 27, was featured in last week’s paper as we backed Tom’s Toddle Fund, aiming to raise £40,000 for selective dorsal rhizotomy surgery.
The surgery would allow Thomas, who has quadriplegic cerebral palsy, to walk unaided.
Thomas’ mum Sarah said there had been a ‘great’ response to the article, with donations on the online page and fundraisers already planning events to collect pennies and pounds.
“People are so generous,” she said.
“The generosity is staggering, it really is, it makes you feel warm inside.”
Sarah has already had meetings with Vicky Harrison, from The Tall Dog, in Midhurst, and fundraiser Rich Sherwell, who runs Give4Beth.
“It has been really positive, it has been fantastic, thank you so much to everyone,” she said.
Rich has already donated a signed Chelsea shirt and a piece of art to a fundraising auction for Thomas.
“My boys are huge Chelsea supporters so they thought ‘Oh wow’,” said Sarah.
“It had to say it would defeat the object if I bought it for them.”
More than £600 has also been dropped into the Observer offices.
One grandmother dropped in a cheque on her grandchildren’s behalf saying she hoped it would remind them of the ‘true meaning of Christmas’ while another donation card simply read: “Dear Thomas, Please get well soon”.
Despite the amazing support, there is still a long way to go.
Thomas’ family is hosting a raffle during a fundraising quiz for Swanfield Community Centre from 7pm, on December 7.
If you think you can help, visit www.justgiving.com/teams/helptomtoddle and donate to the Thomas Jenkinson Fund team or set up your own.
Alternatively, you can text TomS98 to 70070 or drop a cheque into the Observer office c/o Sheena Campbell and made payable to Thomas Jenkinson. To get in touch with the family, email firstname.lastname@example.org.