Boy with autism ‘astonished’ at appeal response

A boy with autism celebrated his 11th birthday with cards sent from all over the world after his mum made an appeal on social media.

Lisa Jackson, from Southsea, asked people to send a card to her son Ben because no-one came to a previous birthday party.

Dedicated trolleys were set up at Portsmouth sorting office to handle the tens of thousands of cards

“My other birthday was awful – this one is a big improvement,” said Ben.

“I could not believe my eyes. Thank you everyone – I have so many cards, I’m astonished.”

Ms Jackson said it would be a birthday “he will never forget – but for all the right reasons”.

Ben opens some of his cards
Image captionBen said he was “astonished” at the number of cards sent to him
Birthday cards for Ben
Image captionRoyal Mail said tens of thousands of cards were sent to Ben

Ben’s family said he was “devastated” when no-one turned up to a previous birthday, despite invites.

They had been unable to organise another birthday party since because of the effect on him.

Ms Jackson said the response to her appeal was overwhelming and had restored Ben’s confidence.

She said: “I would personally like to say a big heartfelt thank you to everyone one of you for your comments and messages. It means so much.

“I never expected to get such an overwhelming response to my post and am so grateful to you all.”

Royal Mail said tens of thousands of cards were sent to Ben.

Royal Mail’s Portsmouth delivery office manager Justin Brown said: “We’ve never had anything like it before. It’s been brilliant to be part of it.”

Some came from as far afield as India, Singapore, Australia and South Africa.

Royal Mail van
Thousands of cards were sent, from as far afield as India, Singapore, Australia and South Africa
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