Whiteley fundraising ball held to thank community for supporting twins

Friend and hairdresser Louise Robinson, left, gives Haanagh Smith a hairdo in readiness for the ball at Whiteley's ''Solent Hotel. Picture: Ian Hargreaves (143161-2)
Friend and hairdresser Louise Robinson, left, gives Haanagh Smith a hairdo in readiness for the ball at Whiteley's ''Solent Hotel. Picture: Ian Hargreaves (143161-2)

There’s only one month left to spend your old pound coins

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THOUSANDS of pounds were raised at a glamorous ball held to show support for two disabled four-year-old twins and their family.

The event saw 145 people put on their best dress and attend a ball at the Solent Hotel in Whiteley on Saturday.

17/09/14  KB''Harry Smith (ten)  from Whiteley with his two disabled twin brothers Zach (left), and Reuben (four). The three children are now celebrating because they all attend the same school together.'Picture: Ian Hargreaves (142579-3) PPP-140711-121619001

17/09/14 KB''Harry Smith (ten) from Whiteley with his two disabled twin brothers Zach (left), and Reuben (four). The three children are now celebrating because they all attend the same school together.'Picture: Ian Hargreaves (142579-3) PPP-140711-121619001

The night had been organised by mum and dad Haanagh and Mike Smith as a way of thanking the community for supporting them after sons Reuben and Zachary were born prematurely in 2010.

Both have complex medical disabilities – Reuben has quadriplegic cerebral palsy and Zachary is deaf, has a spine disorder and cerebral palsy.

Haanagh, 36, said: ‘We have been blessed by all the support.

‘It has been a fabulous weekend and the Whiteley community has done us proud once again.’

The night raised funds for the Rainbow Centre in Fareham, a charity that supports children with cerebral palsy which helped Reuben, and the Elizabeth Foundation in Portsmouth, a charity that supports children with hearing loss which helped Zachary.

It was also raising money to pay for Reuben and Zachary’s ongoing care.

Haanagh said: ‘It was such a happy affair. It was very poignant at the beginning, when we were talking about the twins and how their lives started and the dark times that we have come through.

‘There was not a dry eye in the house. It is still a challenge but we are in a very happy place now.’

More than £1,000 was raised in the raffle alone, and the Smiths are busy adding up the rest of the proceeds.

The family, including older brother 10-year-old Harry, appeared on BBC show DIY SOS two years ago after a friend contacted the show.

Presenter Nick Knowles and his crew took over their home in Saffron Way, Whiteley, and transformed it into a house suitable for the family of five.

People the Smiths met through the show came along to Saturday’s ball.

Haanagh said: ‘It was a great opportunity to thank them all and to have a great night.’