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Choc champion Blake wants young carers to know they are not alone

PUBLISHED: 14:41 28 November 2019 | UPDATED: 15:38 28 November 2019

Blake with the donation of more than 100 boxes from QD Stores in Sudbury Picture: LIBBY LEONARD

Blake with the donation of more than 100 boxes from QD Stores in Sudbury Picture: LIBBY LEONARD

LIBBY LEONARD

A caring 11-year-old boy has collected hundreds of chocolate selection boxes for Suffolk young carers this Christmas.

Blake walking home with more selection boxes for young carers Picture: LIBBY LEONARDBlake walking home with more selection boxes for young carers Picture: LIBBY LEONARD

Blake Leonard, from Long Melford, won't take a selection box for himself, but has made sure close to 500 other young carers will have one through his Chocs for Champs initiative.

Blake, a pupil at Ormiston Sudbury Academy, cares for mum Libby who suffers with secondary progressive multiple sclerosis (SPMS), which means her disability is steadily getting worse.

Libby, 40, said: "It is very lonely for him as a young carer. It can be quite an isolating life. He just wants them to know someone is thinking of them and someone understands what they are doing is a hard job and they have that bit of support."

READ MORE: 'He makes me so proud' - Boy, 10, collects hundreds of Easter eggs for young carers

Blake enjoyed "amazing" support at Easter when he collected nearly 500 Easter eggs for young carers in Suffolk, distributed through the Suffolk Family Carers charity.

Libby said the selection boxes were easier to stack than the Easter eggs Picture: LIBBY LEONARDLibby said the selection boxes were easier to stack than the Easter eggs Picture: LIBBY LEONARD

And the response for his festive campaign has also been "overwhelming", Libby said, adding a large donation had been made by QD Stores in Sudbury.

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Other businesses and organisations, Blake's secondary school and former primary school plus family and friends have also got behind the initiative by becoming drop-off points or providing selection boxes.

Once again Suffolk Family Carers, which Blake is registered with, will ensure the treats get out to young carers across the county.

Blake Leonard and his mum Libby, who he cares for Picture: LIBBY LEONARDBlake Leonard and his mum Libby, who he cares for Picture: LIBBY LEONARD

READ MORE: Young carer tells MPs - 'At school I may seem distracted, but I'm worrying about mum

Libby added: "It's just his way of giving something back. He's had so many good opportunities since he's been registered at Suffolk Family Carers. It's his way of saying thank you to them as well.

"He recognises they have had a huge impact on his life. He just wants to pay it forward and do something kind."

Libby spoke of Blake's ambition for Chocs for Champs, adding his hope is for every young carer - eventually right across the country - to have a chocolate treat at Easter and Christmas.

"He's so passionate about it to the point even now when people donate selection boxes he still gets teared up," she said.

"Not all heros wear capes," said Blake's mum Libby Picture: LIBBY LEONARD

-Search for Chocs for Champs on Facebook.

- For more information about Suffolk Family Carers see here.

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