A MOTHER who saw her healthy son struck down by meningitis has organised a Toddle Waddle and Family Fun Day to thank a charity for its help.

Naomi Hillier is throwing the fundraiser on Saturday, August 30 on the Great Field in Poundbury.

The Dorchester mum, 31, was motivated to raise money for Meningitis Now after her son George Patterson, seven, contracted pneumococcal meningitis as a baby.

Naomi said George spent his early years ‘just surviving’ and wants the day to be a celebration of his courage.

She said: “George has surprised so many people. He goes to Wyvern School in Weymouth and has many friends.

“He’s ever so sociable, he loves children and animals. He is such an inspiration. People have always said to me that it’s the love of his family that has kept him going.”

George is deaf and unable to walk, suffers from epilepsy, problems with his hips and has spent much of his early life in and out of hospital. He has to be fed through a tube. Naomi said she wants to raise awareness through the fun day about how meningitis can affect people in different ways.

She said: “Some people find it hard to understand why George is how he is when they know of people with meningitis who haven’t been left disabled by it.

“George had a strain of meningitis where you don’t get a rash, the strain he had was very rare and 80 per cent of children die within 48 hours of developing it.”

Naomi and her partner Martin Patterson said they would like to thank everyone who has given their support to the family over the years.

THE Toddle Waddle is a sponsored one-mile walk for youngsters aged between 0 and five.

Youngsters are invited to dress up like ducklings to complete the walk around the Great Field as part of the Family Fun Day on Saturday, August 30.

The day takes place from 10am into the evening, with the Toddle Waddle starting at 11am. Sponsor forms are available from the Echo office in Weymouth or by contacting Naomi.

See Toddle Waddle and Family Fun Day for Meningitis Now on Facebook for more information.

Any businesses that can donate prizes for an auction should email Naomi at naomihillier08@gmail.com

She would also like to hear from anyone who can donate the use of portable toilets or offer a discount on them.