“WE’VE done it! We’ve reached the target!” Chairperson of the Strabane Down Syndrome Support Group, Hayley Devine was admittedly emotional this week, following revelations that the group’s ‘Help Us Get To Disney’ fundraiser has reached its goal of over £40,000.
Months ahead of schedule and with countless fundraisers organised by local and businesses to get them over the line, the group now has the financial means to take all children to Disneyland Paris in November.
Strabane Down Syndrome Support Group’s big plans were unveiled to the children at Strabane Cricket Club back in March as part of the big ‘Disney reveal.’
As some local families would probably never have had the chance to go to Disneyland Paris the local group decided to undertake the fundraising mission so that they could all travel as a group. However, as was made clear at the time of the Disney reveal, each family will be making their own contribution.
“The cheque presentation from the Strictly event on Friday for £5,100 – got us over the line,” Hayley Devine remarked with a laugh.
“It’s crazy because we only started this in March.
“We have so many individuals that we have to thank and we know everyone who has contributed and they’ll be given a mention of thanks when the time comes.
“But we’d like to say a massive thanks to every single person who helped in anyway.
“We’ve been totally overwhelmed by the response to this and by the support of local people. It’s been unreal the way that people have got behind us and it’s been very humbling and very emotional.
“It’s amazing to think that now, in January, we can finally say that we’re going to Disney this year.
“We have to pay tribute to our families as well as they put in a sterling effort. Every member of the committee put their hearts and souls into this and Dalgeet (Guram) at Mango Travels has been amazing.”
She concluded, “Everyone in every small way – no matter how small it seemed to them – has helped us achieve this and it really means the world to us.”