When Shaun Daley found out his grandmother had skin cancer, the next day he wrote a letter to his primary school headteacher asking if they could have a fancy dress day for charity.
Since finding out about the diagnosis of Barbara Phillips, the 11-year-old has raised £2,700 for Macmillan Cancer Support, which has won him national recognition as a ‘Local Little Hero’.
“He’s amazing,” said his mum, Sonia, of Ecclesfield. “He’ll do anything for anybody. Now everybody else knows it.”
His fundraising marathon started with a letter to the headteacher of Monteney Primary that read: “I got the worst news ever that my nannan has got cancer. It made me think a lot about ways I can help people like my nannan and the thousands of other people with cancer.”
The school allowed Shaun to fundraise, and he set about collecting raffle prizes, baking cakes to sell and organising a non-uniform day in return for £1 donations.
Macmillan describes him as “a one man fundraising machine”. He has completed a 27 mile bike ride around Sheffield ending at his grandmother’s house and making sure that each lap went past her house so he could see her, he has conquered his fear of heights by taking part in a sponsored climb and he has organised a Macmillan Dress up and Dance.
Sonia said: “He wanted to make something positive out of something negative – his way of dealing with things.
“It’s like living with a whirlwind. Anything he puts his mind to, he can do it. He doesn’t think he is different from anyone else, he doesn’t want thanks. He can’t see he is special but we do. He’s a young boy with an old head on his shoulders.”
Barbara, aged 62, of Ecclesfield, has had an operation for skin cancer and is “doing well”, said Sonia.
“There is nothing Shaun would not do for her.”