11-year-old Thomas, who has epilepsy, has raised an impressive over £400 for Roald Dahl’s Marvellous Children’s Charity by climbing his stairs to the equivalent height of Mount Kilimanjaro! Thomas took on the challenge because he wanted to make sure that other children with epilepsy also benefit from having a specialist epilepsy nurse like he does. He chose to raise money for Roald Dahl’s Marvellous Children’s Charity as they provide specialist nurses across the UK including epilepsy nurses.
Thomas decided to climb the stairs during National Epilepsy Week, and it took him the whole week to achieve his goal as he had to take a break part way through to have an EEG at the hospital, which was very tiring. Thomas’ mum explained that they picked this challenge as they couldn’t go out due to lockdown and wanted to get him to be more active. Thomas’ dad had climbed Mount Kilimanjaro before Thomas was born so Thomas saw it as a fun thing to do and to follow in his dad’s footsteps.
Thomas’ mum Sam was also really keen to raise awareness for the specialist nurse role: “Having a specialist epilepsy nurse makes such a difference. We have someone to call and ask questions at any time which is invaluable. What specialist nurses do is so important. It’s so reassuring to know that someone knows your child, understands and makes sure the right questions are asked. Our nurse, Hailey is a constant and I can email her or phone her with a question whenever I need to – it’s more personal.”
Sam continues: “It’s been four years since Thomas’ first seizure, and it took another year to get a diagnosis. He has a form of childhood epilepsy called Benign Rolandic epilepsy. This means he has seizures when he is falling asleep or waking up, so they have always been home. It really affects him the day after he’s had a seizure as he is exhausted. Thomas has started medication during lockdown and we are hopeful that it will control the seizures and that he will eventually grow out of it. “
“Thomas’ dad and I are so proud of Thomas for raising so much money. It’s important for children to think about others and good for Thomas to be aware that others have similar conditions. His challenge has raised awareness about the charity and the specialist nurse role across many of our friends and family. Every seriously ill child deserves a Roald Dahl Specialist Nurse and there’s still time to donate to Thomas’ campaign to help make this a reality:
If you or your children are inspired by Thomas to start fundraising too, check out our Phizz-whizzing Workshops, which includes a competition for your children to come up with their best fundraising idea! More info here