THE communities of Shoreham and Southwick have rallied together to support terminally-ill teenager Charlie Hilton and his family.
A number of events have been organised to help raise the money needed to make Charlie’s dying wish come true, and send him and his family on a sightseeing tour of Italy.
Fundraisers have organised a quiz night, to be held on Wednesday, October 15, at Adur Civic Centre in Pond Road, Shoreham, from 7pm to 9.30pm.
Charlie’s mum, Lynda Hilton, said she had been overwhelmed by the show of support from the community.
“It’s an amazing feeling,” she said. “It’s hard to describe. It’s phenomenal what’s going on in such a short space of time.”
So far, the family has raised more than £7,000 towards their £10,000 target.
Lynda said the funds had shot up since the Herald ran the family’s story and since Charlie’s School, Shoreham Acdemy, became involved.
Councillor Emma Evans has been a driving force behind the community effort. She said seeing the story about the Hilton family in the Herald had sparked a great deal of discussion on The New Shoreham By Sea Facebook page about how the community could help.
“The quiz idea has come about from that and a core group of members have been working on it ever since,” said Emma.
“We have had an amazing response so far. Any one of us could find ourselves in the same situation. We are a community and this family is a part of it, therefore, we should and are helping them in this small way.”
Tickets at £3 went on sale on Monday at Caring Lady and Mako in the High Street.
Organisers are appealing to businesses for donations to a raffle to be held on the night.
Friend of the family Fiona Turville, whose sons, Daniel and Charlie, have been best friends since they were three years old, has donated £100 as first prize in the quiz.
A sponsored walk from Hove Lagoon to Palace Pier, Brighton, is to go ahead on Saturday.
Charlie’s grandfather, Dave, thanked the ‘wonderful’ St Michael and All Angels church family for their support.
“They have helped us in so many ways for these last two years and we thank each and every one of them,” he said.