Harry, 10, raises £1,000 for children’s ward in memory of his brother James Overland

Kai Yeomans and and Harry Overland.

Kai Yeomans and and Harry Overland. - Credit: Archant

A 10-year-old from March has raised £1,000 for the hospital that cared for his 18-month-old brother.

James Overland

James Overland - Credit: Archant

Harry Overland held an Easter poem and colouring competition as well as a non uniform day at Westwood Primary School, in memory of his brother James, who died in April this year.

With the help of his best friend, Kai Yeomans, Harry raised £959 for The Amazon Children’s Ward at Peterborough City Hospital.

The total was then boosted to £1,000 thanks to a donation.

James Overland was born on October 7 2015 with an extremely rare neurodegenerative condition called ‘Menkes Disease’ sometimes known as kinky hair syndrome. He passed away on April 18 2017.

Harry wanted to raise the money as a thank-you to the children’s ward’s staff who helped and supported his family.

He said: “I cannot do anything to help James, but I can try to help others like him.”

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Harry’s mum, Kristy Read, said: “Harry would like others educated on Menkes and its effects and would like the money he raised to buy toys or sensory items for other patients like James and their siblings of The Amazon Ward.

“We are extremely proud, overwhelmed in fact, to hear that Harry and Kai approached the school to fundraise for this cause.

“This was something they had arranged on their own without informing us until after they had sought headteacher Gill Thomas’ approval.

“We would like to thank Westwood Primary School and Mrs Thomas for their approval of the fundraising and their personal support to Harry during an extremely difficult time.

“We would also like to thank the Westwood pupils and their parents for their generous donations.”

Westwood Primary School held an assembly on Monday where Harry was presented with the cheques.

The money raised will be handed over to The Amazon Ward on Saturday morning at 10am.

What is Menkes Disease?

Menkes Disease is a rare X-linked recessive disease nearly exclusively affecting males at the age of six to eight weeks.

The disease is caused by a deficiency of multiple copper-dependant enzymes and patients with Menkes tend to have no colour pigment to their hair.

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