Brave Dillon's dream inspires £75,000 in gifts to grant wishes
A ten-year-old boy's courage and determination has inspired others to donate more than £75,000 to a charity that grants wishes to children and young people fighting life-threatening conditions.
Dillon Chapman, a pupil at St Louis School in Frome, has neurofibromatosis type 1, a progressive condition where nerve tissues grow tumours that cause serious damage by compressing nerves and organs.
In 2009, the Make A Wish Foundation granted Dillon's dream come true when he met his Moto GP hero Dani Pedrosa.
Since then he has been involved in raising money for the foundation and has become firm friends with the charity's ambassador, self-made millionaire Kevin Green, who has personally contributed £300,000 to the charity.
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In February 2010, Dillon and his parents Mark and Dawn were invited to a gala dinner and asked to talk about Dillon's wish.
His mother said: "Originally they had asked Mark and I if we wanted to talk about the wish and what effect it had on him but in the end he spoke for himself. Afterwards an auction was held and raised £62,000."
Since then Dillon and his parents have been invited to seminars organised by Mr Green. The latest was last weekend and Dillon was again invited to talk about his wish and inspired others to donate more than £900.
The family will be joining Mr Green again in June hopefully to raise even more money for the foundation.
Mrs Chapman said: "People hear about what Make A Wish is all about and what an impact it has on the youngsters. They go away and tell their friends and colleagues and it has a knock-on effect.
"Dillon knows that it takes on average £4,000 to make a wish come true and because he knows how much he enjoyed his wish he has the incentive to make sure other people share in the happiness it gave him.
"His wish was in 2009 and yet it is still going on and on."
Dillon was also recently awarded a highly commended in the Somerset Youth Awards for his charity work.