A boy and his mother who helped change cannabis laws in the United Kingdom have embarked on an epic quest across the country to change lives.
Fifteen-year-old Billy Caldwell and his mother Charlotte are walking 1,000 miles from theirhome in Northern Ireland to London Westminster (via the British Crown Dependency Islands) to raise awareness for medical cannabis access.
Charlotte says the journey is one thousand miles for thousands of NHS chronically ill patients.
Charlotte is also calling for the U.K. government to support medical cannabis studies on efficacy and safety.
Charlotte has extended a public invitation to Secretary of State Matt Hancock to meet for a discussion on the issue of medical cannabis access as well.
A Brave Wizard on a Lifelong Journey
Before receiving a steady regiment of cannabis oil, young Billy would suffer as many as 400 seizures in a day.
Officials returned some of the oil after six days of torture, during which there was a strong public outcry against the confiscation.
Working tirelessly, Charlotte has campaigned for medical cannabis access for her son and others that desperately need it.
On April 27, 2021, the two celebrated Billy’s first year without seizures.
“I have always had this dream for my Wizard where he can have a celebration with cake and balloons and presents—that is not a birthday,” wrote Charlotte on the Keep Billy Alive Facebook page. “But when we celebrate an entire year, or years straight, seizure free. Today we did just that—banner, cake, balloons and sang Happy One Year.”
A Journey of Compassion
Billy and Charlotte began their journey on foot on May 28, raising hundreds of British pounds for their cause on the first day.
During their thousand-mile journey, Billy and Charlotte are tent camping at night and sleeping under the stars.
A fan of the Harry Potter stories, Billy is also wearing his trusty wizard hat.
Along the way, Billy and Charlotte have been met by many supporters, offering handshakes, smiles, and lots of heartfelt encouragement.
Labour Party MP Peter Dowd joined with Billy and Charlotte to walk with them for a stretch in Bootle on June 1.
During his epic journey across the U.K., Billy has enjoyed some other fun interactions like a short scooter lesson in Liverpool and a bit of drumming in Portsmouth.
On Monday, June 7, Charlotte reported that Billy was doing very well on the journey, exceeding her expectations.
“Let me tell you, when a Wizard is RESTING his boots you know he is up to no good—he is working so hard to raise as much funds for NHS vulnerable chronically ill patients, and it is working,” wrote Charlotte on Facebook. “We have some way to go, but we see the light at the end of the tunnel, and Billy is doing so wonderful. I am so proud.”
Charlotte reported on Monday that their fundraising had passed the £10,500.00 mark.
While there are many miles to go, Charlotte says that Billy is doing great as they journey onward.
To continue following Billy and Charlotte’s walk across the U.K. and their continued crusade for medical cannabis access, join the Keep Billy Alive page on Facebook.