One of the young people Noah’s Ark Children’s Hospice supports got the surprise of his life at school yesterday when Spurs star Dele Ali popped in to say hello.

Dele Alli visits MarkMidfielder Dele visited Vale School in Tottenham where he surprised die-hard Spurs fan Mark. Mark, 14, has complex needs as well as Down’s syndrome and has been supported by Noah’s Ark for the past seven years. Noah’s Ark Specialist Carer, Jules also visited Mark along with Dele.

Jules plays a key role in Mark’s life and is one of seven Specialist Carers at Noah’s Ark who are clinically trained to look after children in the care of the charity. He visits family homes, organises activities and fun days out and helps families build lasting memories of their child.

Dele paid a visit to Mark this week as part of this year’s BBC Children in Need appeal, which culminates on Friday 16 November. Noah’s Ark is Tottenham Hotspur’s Official Charity Partner and one of the organisations that benefits from money raised through this year’s Children in Need campaign. Jules’ role is funded by Children in Need.

During the afternoon, Dele joined Jules in helping Mark with his Maths and English before going taking part in a music session. Mark and his classmates then showed off their sporting skills to Dele by challenging him to a game of boccia, a seated ball game that is now a Paralympic sport, organised by the Tottenham Hotspur Foundation who have worked within the Vale School for 10 years.

Dele said: “It’s been brilliant meeting Mark today and seeing the smile on his face when I walked through the door. Noah’s Ark is a fantastic charity that operates on our doorstep, so it was great to see how they support children that require specialist support.”

Ru Watkins, Chief Executive, Noah’s Ark Children’s Hospice, said: “It’s wonderful to see Dele make a surprise visit to one of our children at their school today. We’re grateful to Tottenham Hotspur for our charity partnership, helping to highlight our cause. Our charity was founded and developed by the community because local people believed our children and their families deserved more dignity and care. Over the course of the partnership, we’ve established Noah’s Ark Children’s Hospice as a hub for and leader of children’s palliative care in North London.”

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All photos courtesy of Tottenham Hotspur FC