Gainford pupils raise cash in honour of their superhero classmate
By Martin Paul - Senior Reporter
CHILDREN in Gainford have donned the outfits of their favourite superheroes to raise cash in honour of a poorly classmate.
Ryan Chidzey captured the hearts of the people in the village when he was diagnosed with the rare muscle wasting disease Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy aged three.
In two years almost £40,000 has been raised for Muscular Dystrophy UK through the Our Fight For Ryan campaign, which was launched by his parents, Cieran and Claire.
Gainford Primary School launched a superheroes day on Friday, May 3, in support of the campaign.
Headteacher Chris Riley said: “Everyone is dressed as a super hero, or their own hero whether it be their grandad, a sporting hero or even a pop star. Ryan is a child we have in school who was diagnosed with Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy whilst in pre school after staff at our school noticed he had difficulty getting up from the floor and had some movement difficulties.
“This is a genetic condition that causes muscles to weaken and waste over time leading to increased disability – it weakens not only muscles but the heart and breathing too. As Ryan loves superheroes we decided to make this our theme for our fundraising day.”
She added that it had been well supported by staff, children and parents alike, with some parents giving £20 and £10 notes on the day.
Ms Riley said: “The total so far for donations is £231 which is fantastic given that we only have 75 pupils on roll. We have cakes to sell this afternoon so are hoping to raise extra money via our cake stall. All of the funds raised will go towards the Duchenne Research Breakthrough Fund – funding world class research, boosting clinical trial capacity in the UK and supporting the important campaigning activity that will ensure Ryan and others in the UK have access to emerging treatments.”