09/05/2011 – Seven year old Leroy Scott from Shoeburyness in Southend-on-Sea has had his dearest wish, to learn a dance with dance troupe Diversity, winner of Britain’s Got Talent 2009, granted by Starlight Children’s Foundation, the UK’s leading wish granting charity for children with serious and terminal illnesses.
Due to his brother Tyrone, aged twelve, being diagnosed at the age of four months, Leroy’s parents knew there was a chance of another child having cystic fibrosis. Shortly after birth, Leroy was also diagnosed with the life shortening condition, which severely affects the major organs of the body and particularly the lungs. He requires daily medication and physiotherapy in order to keep well, but his mum Jenny says: “He doesn’t seem to let it get him down much, even though he has to cope with all the problems that come with cystic fibrosis.”
Leroy was referred to Starlight for a once-in-a-lifetime wish and Jenny explained why he chose to meet the London-based dance troupe Diversity and learn a dance with them: “He has a lot of energy and enthusiasm about things that he enjoys. In particular, he loves street dance and has just joined a local dance club.”
Formed in 2007 in memory of a dear friend, the dance troupe consists of eleven members from East London and the Essex area. Ranging in age from 13-26, Diversity is made up of three sets of brothers: Ashley and Jordan Banjo, Ian, Jamie and Matthew McNaughton and Sam and Mitchell Craske. They are complemented by four of their best friends: Terry Smith, Ike Ezekwugo, Warren Russell and Perri Luc Kiely.
As a surprise, the charity arranged for a limousine to take Leroy, his parents, Jenny and Rhys, his sister Heidi and brother Tyrone to Diversity’s studio in Rainham. Leroy had no idea that he was going to meet his dance heroes. He was made to close his eyes and when he opened them again he found Diversity surrounding him – Leroy was over the moon! Inside the studios they watched the group perform and saw all their dance costumes. Leroy was then invited to learn a number of dances with the group Britain’s Got Talent judge Simon Cowell described as “sheer and utter perfection”.
After the wish, Leroy’s mum said: “He absolutely loved the wish and it was the most amazing surprise for him. He and his brother are on intravenous antibiotics this week, which is horrid for them, but at least he has had the huge high and photos from the wish to look back on and help him through it.”
A member of Diversity said: “It was fantastic to meet Leroy and his family and show them some of our moves. With his condition, Leroy clearly has to deal with a huge amount and we were so pleased to be able to help grant his wish and encourage him to pursue his love for street dance – he has certainly got talent!”
Contact: Henny Breakwell
Tel: 020 7262 2881 #231
Starlight grants a once-in-a-lifetime wish for seriously and terminally ill children, restoring the magic and fun of childhood and giving the whole family happy memories to share, whatever the future holds.
Starlight also creates entertainment in every hospital and hospice throughout the UK. Sick children go to Starlight parties, laugh their way through pantomimes, go out on Starlight Escapes, play games and watch films on the Starlight Fun Centre, and enjoy the toys and puzzles of the Starlight Distraction Box. Happy children respond better to treatment and Starlight helps children to forget about their illness and simply have a bit of fun.
You can make a donation online or by calling us on 020 7262 2881. For every £1 you donate, Starlight can assure you that 91p goes towards helping very ill children. To refer a child for a wish, simply complete our wish referral form.