Coleraine Specsavers store directors Lynn Mackey (left) and Judith Ball (right) congratulate Oliver Dickey with his mum Charlene, on winning the Overcoming Adversity Award at the 2015 Sunday Life Spirit of NI Awards with Specsavers.

Six year old Oliver Dickey has come out top at the grand final of the 2015 Sunday Life Spirit of NI Awards with Specsavers held on June 12 in the Culloden Hotel. Oliver won the Overcoming Adversity category which was presented in front of over 300 guests including a host of TV celebrities and former X-Factor judge Louis Walsh.

Oliver’s determination

Oliver was facing life in a wheelchair after he was tragically diagnosed with spastic diplegia, a form of cerebral palsy, when he was just 18 months old.

Pioneering surgery in USA

His parents, Neil and Charlene, found out about a pioneering surgery in the United States that could give Oliver the hope of one day walking, running and playing with his friends and family. Despite the pessimism of UK doctors, the family raised more than £91,000 to fund the treatment. The surgery was a success and brave Oliver astounded everyone by taking his first steps last year and is now building his strength through intensive physio programmes.

Congratulations to Oliver

Judith Ball, store director, Coleraine said: ‘The Spirit of NI Awards celebrate all that is great about Northern Ireland and its people and Specsavers are once again proud to be associated with such an uplifting occasion. We were absolutely delighted that our local hero Oliver was recognised and applauded for his amazing achievement. Congratulations must also go to his parents, Neil and Charlene, who have shown such determination and optimism throughout every moment of Oliver’s journey.’

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