Being bound to a wheelchair for one’s whole life is a difficulty no one would ever wish for. This, however, is the type of life that 14-year-old, Nick Boyard, a sufferer of cerebral palsy has had to endure. Fortunately, Nick’s life changed when his family discovered a casino charity called, CHIPS Charity. Founded on behalf of the casino and gaming industry, it is sponsored by some of the biggest casino brands including Genting, Cashino and Grosvenor.
Before meeting the casino charity, the teenager admitted to having a different life as this congenital disorder impairs his movement and coordination. Nick has had to mainly rely on friends and family members to manoeuvre him around. He expressed overwhelming sadness when he shared that he struggled to maintain a social life because the condition impacted his ability to make friends and the freedom to go anywhere on his own.
He said, “I always have to have someone with me. And every day someone comes up to me and moves me out of their way.”
However, a ray of hope shone through Nick’s grey cloud when the charitable non-profit organization gave him his own powered wheelchair. Since being the presented the wheelchair, he has been able to travel self-sufficiently, as well as have an increased chance of making friends at his school, Longhill High School.
Apart from Nick, the two other people who are most relieved by the gift are his parents, Lisa and Stephen Boyard. They were the ones who discovered the casino charity in 2017, which was giving away a powered wheelchair to a lucky winner in their locale, Brighton. After submitting an application on behalf of their beloved son, they soon received a phone call that would remarkably change all of their lives. At its current worth, Nick’s new chair costs is a whopping sum of £7,000. And without the help of casino charity, the parent might not have been able to afford it.
CHIPS Charity’s founder, Linda Lindsay had something to say about the state-of-the-art motorised chair at the presentation; she said, “We are delighted to present Nick with a gift that we have no doubt will change his life for the better. The chair will allow Nick to move around without relying on others, providing him with the independence that he deserves.”
Tony Pearce, the Executive Vice President of Genting UK—the operator of Genting Casino Brighton—also shared his comment on the act. He described the experience of being able to donate to the CHIPS Charity as ‘thrilling’ and thanked all the members of his team who made it possible to raise the money that was needed to purchase the wheelchair.
CHIPS Charity (or CHIPS) specialises in purchasing certain powered wheelchairs for disabled young individuals and teenagers. They get money from donations and this specific powered chair was bought with the one that was donated by ten employees who work at Genting UK. They raised over £25,000 by running the Rock and Roll Madrid Marathon, a Half Marathon in April 2018, and another Rock and Roll Marathon and half-marathon in San Diego, June 2018.
CHIPS Charity does not plan on stopping or slowing down anytime soon until more kids and young adults get their own powered wheelchair. They are still raising money and preparing to participate in other marathons next year.
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