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Disney show director and author Steven Vinacour's charity gesture after letter from brother of Martha Trust resident

A youngster who has been unable to see his disabled brother during lockdown has inspired an established author to raise money for the Deal care home where he lives.

Steven Vinacour is a writer, producer and director of nearly 20 years whose portfolio of work includes TV specials for Channel 4, ITV, Disney, Living and Sky.

Steven Vinacour and his family who hosted online shows for children for nine weeks during lockdown
Steven Vinacour and his family who hosted online shows for children for nine weeks during lockdown

He was mid-way through a nationwide tour promoting his book Ted & His Time-Travelling Toilet: Roman Rewind when the pandemic arrived, prompting the launch of a new online show for children.

It was during this that he encountered 11-year-old James Sadler whose compelling letter sparked an idea.

Mr Vinacour said: “The idea for my online show was that viewers would come up with ideas for a story, I would tweak it and make it work as a novel. Every day for nine weeks my family and I would host a show.

"The response was amazing. In the end we had over 400,000 kids tune in from all over the world – Namibia to Pakistan, Australia to Alabama. They could either watch passively or submit ideas.

"The idea was to give away the download for free and I thought I’d tie it in with a charity that meant something to one of the viewers.

Marth Trust is the Mercury's Charity of the Year 2020
Marth Trust is the Mercury's Charity of the Year 2020

"James Sadler wrote to me and told me how his brother Adam is looked after by Martha Trust. James said that he was missing Adam during lockdown as he wasn’t allowed to visit and that sold it to me.

"I set up a Justgiving page and anyone that downloads the book is also encouraged to make a donation."

Martha Trust is a registered charity providing inclusive, lifelong care for people with profound physical and learning disabilities in Kent.

The book 'World Gone Wrong' incorporates the ideas of 191 budding young authors who are all credited in the book as co-authors. Sales have already raised £100.

Mr Vinacour said: “It really is a book written for kids by kids and felt a really positive thing to do in a really unsettling time."

Fundraising and events officer Kerry Banks BEM said: “At Martha, we feel so thankful to Steven for choosing to supporting our charity.

"Our homes have been in lockdown since February to safeguard our very special residents and to date, I am happy to say that our residents and staff are safe, remain COVID free and long may that continue.

"Thank you to everyone that supports this lovely project."

If you would like to make a donation to Steven’s JustGiving page, please visit justgiving.com/fundraising/steven-vinacour

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