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Oliver's appeal passes new milestone
Updated 4:16pm Thursday 16th January 2014 in News
An appeal to change a little boy's life has passed another milestone leaving less than £8,000 to hit the final target.
The Argus is campaigning to help five-year-old Oliver Poinsignon's family and friends raise £52,000 needed to cover the cost of a vital operation and the equipment and physiotherapy sessions he will need afterwards.
Enough money has now been raised to cover the cost of surgery and Oliver, who has cerebral palsy, will be going into Great Ormond Street Hospital on February 7.
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But fundraising will continue in earnest with calls for businesses and individuals across Sussex to help the family hit their goal.
The latest business to come forward with their fundraising initiative is Mears Group's Brighton branch which has organised a raffle to add to the £44,339.30 already raised.
Mum Julie Langmaid said: “We're absolutely delighted to have got this far, but we know the last couple of thousand is the hardest.
“Friends and family have been absolutely brilliant, but the response from people who don't even know us is just amazing.
“It really is so appreciated and it's going to make such a difference.”
Five-year-old Oliver, who lives with his mother in Ashurst, near Steyning, finds it difficult to get around because of extremely tight and painful muscles in his legs.
This will get worse as he gets older and grows.
His operation, called selective dorsal rhizotomy (SDR), will help him walk more easily.
Oliver's dad Jean Marc Poinsignon said: “I think it is amazing to see that we have reached this amount in so little time, but it just shows how beautiful and generous people are when it comes to children.
“The hardest times are to come, but people have been very generous with Oliver's fundraising.
“Families, friends, work colleagues, businesses around Brighton and Hove, Argus readers - they've all contributed amazingly to this campaign.”
But the operation's success will be determined by the intensive physiotherapy that follows, which is why the family need to carry on raising money.
SDR surgery is not routinely available on the NHS and, because it is so expensive and still relatively new, it will normally only be given the go-ahead following an application for funding if all other options have been explored.
Oliver's surgeons in London believe the sooner he has the operation the better.
The original application for NHS funding was rejected.
The Argus Appeal has pledged £5,000 to the fund, and money is continuing to come in.
Any individuals or businesses interested in making a donation or supporting an event, can contact the campaign via Facebook: SDR4Oliver or visit www.just giving.com/SDR4Oliver
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