Eight-year old Daniel Haslam’s appeal was highlighted in the media and stirred the emotions of hundreds of people, who trebled the tally within three hours.
The family, from Ratoath, Co Meath, were hoping to raise €5,000 to help Daniel complete his “bucket list” of places he wants to see.
Donations had exceeded €13,715 by 6pm last night.
Daniel, who has autism, was diagnosed with optical atrophy early last month, after his mum, Carol, queried why his prescription for glasses was getting stronger every six months. The diagnosis means that Daniel will go blind within six years.
“We got him checked when he was four years old and got him reading glasses. However, his prescription was constantly changing with every six-month check-up,” she said. “From March to September last year, he went from being able to watch the TV from the couch to having to stand 8in away from it.
“Daniel was very upset about the fact that he will lose his eyesight and is asking heartbreaking questions. He’s even wondering how he will manage to eat his food, because he won’t see the plate.”
Carol and her husband, Kevin, decided to try and bring Daniel to as many places as he wants to see before his eyesight deteriorates fully.
“He’s mad into geography and wants to see structures like the Eiffel Tower, Big Ben and the pyramids.”
Now, after the overwhelming public support, Daniel will be able to see most of the places he has dreamed of.
“We’re just overwhelmed this morning,” said Carol.
“Daniel wants to go on the TV now and tell his story.
“He is a mad Thomas the Tank Engine fan and he’s fascinated by pictures of the Golden Gate Bridge, in San Francisco, because he thinks that’s Thomas’s biggest bridge in the world.
“Now, with people’s generosity, seeing that bridge is now possible.”
She continued: “My family and I would just like to say a massive thank you to everyone for their support.
“I’m just amazed at the goodness of people who have taken the time to donate what they can afford.
“I was shocked at the bigger donations, especially the two donations of €2,500 each. I’m also so very thankful for every fiver that’s been donated.
“That fiver might be all someone could afford and they chose to give it to Daniel, instead of spending it on something else. We’re so humbled by it all.”
Anyone who would like to help can access https://www.gofundme.com/dansadventures