BY LIZZIE PARRY AND MATT BUNN
Monday, January 14, 2013
INSPIRATIONAL Mason Fountain is continuing to overcome the odds as he battles a brain tumour.
But the eight-year-old is determined to turn his own struggle into a force for good – and his charity mission has clearly won the hearts of the nation.
He has raised £50,000 to help make the dreams of poorly kids like him come true.
And now his appeal has been further boosted by the news that more than 100,000 people – including comedian Ricky Gervais – follow Mason and his fundraising exploits on micro-blogging website Twitter.
Mason, who only set up his Twitter account a year ago, said he could hardly contain his joy at reaching the landmark.
“It is just amazing that we have got to 100,000 followers,” he said.
“I would like to say the biggest thank you to everyone who is followings.”
Mason, who attends Morland Primary School, launched his charity Mason’s Magic, under the umbrella of Brain Tumour UK, in January last year, with the aim of giving gifts and treats to children with brain tumours.
About 40 children had their wishes granted in 2012 and he has had the chance to meet some of the youngsters he has helped.
And while Mason is still receiving treatment for cancer, he is determined to keep upbeat.
He added: “It has been really hard because of the chemo and being in hospital so much and all of the operations, but our motto is to keep positive and that is all I have to do.”
Mason, is also marking a major step on his own journey with cancer – returning to the sports field at school for the first time in years.
He is now back in the classroom with his pals for three full days and two half days a week.
Proud mum Shelley Fountain, of Chantry Green, is hoping after the Easter break Mason will be able to go to school five days a week for the first time ever.
The 30-year-old told The Star: “Mason’s latest MRI results show his tumour is stable.
“He is doing really well at the moment but it is like playing a waiting game.
“His next check up is in three months. But it is really hard not knowing what the future holds.”
Mum-of-four Mrs Fountain thanked the public for their overwhelming support – and revealed there are plans to expand the charity.
It is hoped that this year Mason’s Magic will be able to buy treats for the siblings of youngsters battling brain tumours and arrange family days out, as well as helping children whose parents have been diagnosed with the disease.
“We want more kids to come forward,” she added. “Our leaflets are now in hospitals across the region but we are desperate to spread the word to people.
“We know from our experiences that siblings are really affected. For the child being treated there is lots of special attention and one-to-one time. Often siblings miss out on that and so we think it is really important to help the whole family.
“The support we have on Twitter is amazing, it shows that we are reaching people further afield too. We are so pleased, Mason is just overwhelmed.
“He loves knowing that other kids are having their wishes granted. He really treasures it and loves meeting other kids going through what he is.”