An air stewardess has set up her own charity to help under-privileged children, after being inspired on a visit to an orphanage in Ghana.
Faye Toner of Purley, who works as cabin crew for Virgin Atlantic, set up Spread Some Sunshine after visiting the orphanage in Accra, when in the country each month with work.
The 32-year-old was touched when she learned some of the children there did not know their own birthdays and before long became actively involved in supporting them, bringing birthday gifts, clothes and toys donated by her and her friends.
Miss Toner said: “A lot of my family and friends started to sponsor the children so they could have birthdays and would give me the money to get them a present, which I would give when I went to Ghana with work.”
After being inundated with kind offers, Miss Toner decided to set up a charity and started fundraising to buy a minibus for the orphanage.
She held bake sales, swam pier to pier in Brighton, and persuaded Virgin boss Richard Branson to match fund the £5,000 raised.
She said: “The benefits a minibus will bring to the children’s lives will be unimaginable.
“The kids will be able to go out and about and enjoy day trips and the bus will facilitate access to the local school.”
Spread Some Sunshine is also working alongside other projects worldwide, including a small children's home for girls in Mumbai and the Children’s Trust in Tadworth, Surrey.
To celebrate the launch of the charity Miss Toner teamed up with music writer and producer Daz Shields to produce a “sunshine single”.
The single features 39 different voices, including 16 children from the orphanage in Ghana and it is hoped the song, which is available on iTunes and Amazon, will raise money and awareness of the charity’s projects.
Miss Toner said: “All projects help under privileged children or children living in distress. It is about small gestures bringing smiles to children’s faces at very hard times.”
To support the charity or find out more visit spreadsome sunshine.com.
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