A young artist has seen her handiwork brought to life on the front of a truck to raise money for Derian House Children’s Hospice.
Entries came flooding in to the ‘Draw it for Derian’ competition that promised to put one youngster’s artwork on a huge Volvo truck to celebrate Derian House’s 30th anniversary year.
But it was 11-year-old Ellie Biggs’ masterpiece – adorned with birthday cake, presents, and party balloons – that caught the judge’s eyes.
Ellie and her parents travelled 250 miles from her home in Devon to Derian House in Chorley to see her drawings emblazoned on the front of the brand new Volvo FH demonstrator truck on Saturday (18 March).
It was especially fitting as Ellie’s parents, Amy and Adam Biggs, both work at Volvo dealers – Stuarts Truck & Bus.
Runners up, 10-year-old twins Charlotte and Holly Beesley, of Chorley, also came along to celebrate and show off their own designs – and were presented with lots of goodies for all of their hard work.
The competition, led by truck dealers Thomas Hardie Commercials, invited young people to design a special Volvo truck to celebrate 30 years of Derian House Children’s Hospice.
Ellie’s winning design features a ‘text to donate’ number to encourage donations while the truck is out on the road or at events. Every customer that uses the vehicle will also be invited to make a voluntary donation.
Ellie said: “My mum told me about the competition. I love Volvo trucks because they’re a big part of what my family does – it’s the family business. I’ve always loved art too. I’m looking forward to going to secondary school because they have an incredible art studio.
“I was shocked to see my drawings on the truck – it was amazing. I’m so happy that I won. I’ll definitely be looking out for it on the roads! Getting to ride in the truck with my design on it made me feel like a celebrity, it was so much fun!’’
Ellie’s mum, Amy, said: “Ellie has always been passionate about art. She was diagnosed with Type 1 Diabetes when she was eight-years-old and she really finds that drawing helps to calm her emotions when things get overwhelming for her. We are so incredibly proud of her, she is very talented and it’s so lovely to see her beautiful artwork being used for such an amazing cause.”
Thomas Hardie decided to launch the campaign after the success of their ‘Drive it for Derian’ campaign in 2021, which saw their unmissable Derian-branded truck hit the road with their customers invited to make voluntary donations.
Steve Wilson, New Vehicle Sales and Marketing Director for Thomas Hardie Commercials Ltd., said: “At Thomas Hardie, we’ve always wanted to be more than just a business. It’s been our ongoing mission to support good causes, and we’ve been supporters of Derian House for over 25 years, and it is a cause that is close to the hearts of many people in the area.
“Today, we’re proud to say that Thomas Hardie is a business that has a culture of charitable giving, one that’s helping to bring about positive change. Giving is now such an integral part of who we are, and our employees are constantly raising awareness for new charities they’re passionate about.”
Mick Croskery, Fundraising Manager at Derian House, said: “The new Volvo truck looks awesome! Well done to Ellie with her winning design, and thank you to everyone that got out their colouring pencils to celebrate Derian House’s 30th year.
“We are hugely grateful to Thomas Hardie Commercials and its customers for supporting us once again. It will cost us £6 million to run services at Derian House in 2023, so we rely heavily on the generosity of our incredible supporters.”
Derian House Children’s Hospice has been helping children and young people with life-limiting conditions make the most of every moment for 30 years.
Thomas Hardie Commercials Ltd. is the main distributor for Volvo Truck, Bus & Coach in the North West of England, North Wales and Lancashire.