READERS have been quick to respond to the Help Toby Run With His Friends campaign, launched in last week’s Observer.
Jonathan West, store director at Specsavers Bognor Regis, has organised fundraising fun for half-term, having spotted a billboard promoting the campaign.
From Monday to Sunday, May 31, the London Road store will be holding a colouring competition and inviting children to have their faces painted in the store, in exchange for a donation.
Mr West said: “We are keen to raise as much awareness as possible for the Observer’s campaign for Toby.
“It’s important that all children have the same opportunities that others do – even simple things like running are taken for granted, which is why we want to help Toby to be able to play and run with his friends.
“This is a wonderful campaign and we’re inviting everyone in our community to come to the store and help us get one step closer to hitting the fundraising target.”
To donate or book an eye test, visit Specsavers Bognor Regis at 22 London Road, Bognor Regis, call 01243 842 238 or visit www.specsavers.co.uk/stores/bognorregis
Six-year-old Toby Booker, of Havelock Road, Bognor Regis, finds it difficult to walk due to cerebral palsy. The Observer campaign is supporting parents Ian and Jess Booker’s fundraising efforts to enable Toby to have a £40,000 operation at Great Ormond Street Hospital in London.
Friends and family have a host of fundraising ideas lined up, including the Bognor Prom 10k race on Sunday, which raised around £600.
Toby’s young friends at Barnham Primary School are also getting involved. A group of ten boys and girls have planned the Barnham Mini Dream Team 5k Walkathon, which they will complete in fancy dress on Saturday, from 2pm-4pm, to raise money.
Next on the list is the Discovery Run half marathon at Petworth Park on Saturday, May 30.
Clare Drew, Vanessa Berney and Julie and Carl Fivash are taking part in the 5k Mud Monster Run on June 7, while Dan Edwards and Tom Wrapson will tackle the 10k version the same day.
A family fun day, Fun For Toby, will be held at Funtingdon Primary School, where Jess is a teacher, on September 19, and staff from the school will take part in the Fishbourne Flat Five on September 20 to raise money for Toby’s campaign.
So far, just under £3,000 has been raised in 27 days. Visit www.tobybooker.co.uk to find out more.
Mum Jess Booker said: “We cannot put into words how overwhelmed we are, we now believe that we will make it to our target. Thank you so much.”
Visit www.gofundme.com/skc58k to make a donation online, or cheques can be made payable to Toby Booker SDR and sent c/o Elaine Hammond, Chichester Observer, City Gate, Southgate, Chichester, West Sussex, PO19 8DQ.
CLICK HERE to see the campaign launch.