‘Superhero’ children and teenagers from across Derry were the stars of the catwalk recently in a phenomenal fashion show organised by Jamie’s Journie.
There were cheers and shouts as young people of all ages modelled the latest fashions as their delighted family, friends and guests looked on.
Held in the City Hotel, it was one of the highlights of the local event calendar and helped raise funds for Jamie’s Journie, which helps children and young people with cancer and their families.
Set up by the inspirational 17-year-old Jamie Harkin, the non-profit organisation has supported countless families across Derry and the North West.
All the children who took part in the fashion show, which was compered by the ever-talented Micky Doherty, have been affected by cancer and Jamie told the Journal how it was one of the most “overwhelming nights” of his life.
He said: “From tears of laughter to tears of emotion it was incredible to be involved in something so powerful. The kids, young and old were superstars and they just shone. To show our supporters, both businesses and people, how much Jamie’s Journie helps local families affected by cancer and to turn such a negative into such a positive was so touching.
Micky Doherty as usual was so funny and at one stage took on a 21-year-old gymnast who was modelling in a dance-a-thon. It was hilarious! There were teens to ladies and gentlemen in the 70 and 80s who had a complete ball and thanks to DJ TomSki were never off the dance floor.”
A number of volunteers also gave their time to do hair and make-up, Gav Connolly did photography and students from Jamie’s school, Lumen Christi helped out on the night.
Jamie’s mum Patricia said they had received “amazing” support from their sponsors and local businesses, with the clothes modelled coming from Bambinos in Buncrana, Evolve Menswear, Pippa’s boutique and #thanksjosh. There was also lots of entertainment for the children and a great night was had by all.
Designer Lucas Barber also created a special one-off dress for 16-year-old Lauren Monaghan, Her mother, Yvonne, said Lauren, who was diagnosed with a brain tumour, is still talking about the show, which made her feel “fantastic.”
She said: “They just made her feel like a million dollars. She was so happy and it gave her so much confidence.”
Yvonne was full of praise for Jamie’s Journie.
She said: “Jamie’s Journie been an amazing support to kids in the north west.
“They are doing unbelievable work.
“Lauren had this dress designed for her and couldn’t believe how special it made her feel. We’re just overwhelmed by the generosity of Jamie’s Journie.”
In an extra surprise, each model was able to keep their outfits from the night, as Jamie’s Journie purchased them as a special present.
Meanwhile, five-year-old Rory Hutcheon was the first recipient of ‘Sorcha’s Surprises,’ the winners of which were drawn at the Jamie’s Journie Fashion Show.
Rory, who finished over three years of treatment six weeks ago, won a voucher for a break away, sponsored by L & S World Travel.
Sorcha’s Surprises were launched by Jamie’s Journie in partnership with the family of Sorcha Glenn, who passed away from Cervical Cancer in 2014.
Sorcha’s partner Matt pulled the names out of a box at the fashion show, with Rory’s name coming out first.
His mother, Nicola, told the ‘Journal’ her little boy was over the moon with his prize.
She said they haven’t decided what they’ll do with it yet or where they’ll go but added it “could not have come at a better time.” Nicola described Jamie’s Journie as “amazing” adding how they “have done so much” for the family.