DEDICATED fundraisers with fighting spirit have raised £3,000 to help a little girl who needs vital hospital treatment.
David Hoyle, boxing coach at Alpha Boxing Club, Hemsworth, sold tickets to raffles with top boxing prizes nights after hearing about Keira McFarlane through a friend.
The toddler, who is nearly two years old and from Doncaster, desperately needed the cash to pay for stem cell treatment. She was born with optic nerve hypoplasia - which means she is partially sighted because there are not enough nerves connecting her brain and eyes.
But thanks to the club’s efforts - and with the help of other fundraisers - they have hit the £20,000 needed to send her to China for treatment to improve her vision.
Items on offer included a pair of signed shorts from Filipino professional boxer Manny Pacquiao, tickets to attend an evening with Ricky Hatton, tickets for an evening with Joe Frazier, and a game of golf at Owston Hall Hotel, Owston.
Mr Hoyle, 34, Ashfield Road, Hemsworth, said he decided to help after meeting Keira at a boxing evening.
He said: “I saw her and knew she needed the treatment to help improve her eyesight and I just got a lump in my throat. She is such a beautiful little girl.
“I wanted to do everything I could to help.”
He and several of the boys form the club sold tickets around Hemsworth.
The Albion WMC on Kirkby Road, Hemsworth, also added £800 to the club’s £3,000 by holding a charity night.
He said the support he got from the town was absolutely fantastic and feels brilliant about the amount of money they raised.
The club managed to get the items through friend and boxing promoter Andy Booker, who also helped with fundraising.
Neil Wilson, 42, manager at Alpha Boxing Club based on Southmoor Road, said: “I am so happy for Keira that the target was reached and it just shows what can be achieved when communities pull together. People should do it more often.
“As a club, we want to help anyone we can and am just glad we could be part of this.”
Drax Power Station employees in Selby raised the remainder of the funds.