Published: 12:00, 20 January 2022
| Updated: 12:26, 20 January 2022
An 11-year-old who was left fighting for his life after a horror crash has been named an air ambulance charity ambassador.
He ended up in a coma after the accident, which saw him suffer a severe head injury, fracture his pelvis in four places, and suffer bad damage to an arm having been dragged along the road by the car.
A Kent Surrey Sussex (KSS) air ambulance rushed to the scene, and delivered emergency treatment, including putting Charlie on a ventilator.
The youngster was quickly taken by helicopter to King’s College Hospital, London.
He arrived at the hospital's helipad 17 minutes later, where medics from the major trauma centre were waiting to receive him.
So bad were Charlie's injuries, it took doctors five hours to stop his bleeding.
But after two blood transfusions and many months of intensive therapy, he has now made a good recovery.
Charlie and his family have since been determined to help the air ambulance charity that saved his life.
From sharing their story in order to highlight the life-saving work of KSS to taking part in fundraising challenges, Charlie and his mum, Lauren, work tirelessly to support KSS.
In recognition of his "incredible" efforts, Charlie has now been invited to become one of KSS's first Young Ambassadors - a group of inspiring young people who represent the charity, helping to raise awareness of its vital work.
Charlie said: “I was really pleased to be asked to be a Young Ambassador for KSS.
"They saved my life so I would like to give something back. I’m looking forward to being part of the team and to bringing lots of awareness.”
His mum Lauren, who has become a KSS volunteer since Charlie's accident, added: “To say thank you for saving his life, our family are doing all we can to help KSS.
"Before Charlie’s accident, I never realised just how much they depend on local people like you and me to deliver the life-saving work they do.
"I am so proud that Charlie has been asked to become a KSS Young Ambassador, he is going to love it.”
Sarita Taneja, Community Fundraiser, KSS, added: “We are so very grateful to Charlie and to our Young Ambassadors for their incredible support, and are honoured that they are now part of Team KSS.”
“Our Young Ambassadors have an important role to play in helping the community understand more about what we do - delivering world-class pre-hospital emergency care 24/7 to the 4.8 million people who live in our region.
"They also inspire and generate support, which is critical as 86% of our total income is from the incredible generosity of our supporters. It costs £15.2m each year to continue to operate our service every hour of every day.
“I welcome you to Team KSS, Charlie, and thank you from the bottom of my heart for helping us towards achieving our vision of an end to preventable loss of life from medical emergency.”