Can you help Cristina's dream come true?

A TALENTED 16-year-old girl has been accepted into an elite arts academy. Cristina Hoey, from Digswell, was one of a hundred youngsters selected out of 4,000 to study at the world renowned Italia Conti Academy London. After her amazement and delight, she

A TALENTED 16-year-old girl has been accepted into an elite arts academy.

Cristina Hoey, from Digswell, was one of a hundred youngsters selected out of 4,000 to study at the world renowned Italia Conti Academy London.

After her amazement and delight, she realised there was one snag - the course costs more than �20,000.

This is something dad Tom admitted he wouldn't be able to fund, as he is a widowed father-of-three.


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His wife died seven years ago.

The supply teacher at Commonswood Primary School is now appealing for any person or company to sponsor Cristina.

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He said: "Unfortunately, as much as I would love to, I cannot afford to pay for Cristina to do her course.

"I had to give up my well-paying job, because I needed to look after my children.

"So now we really need help."

In 2001 Tom's wife Susan died of cancer, aged just 38.

At the time his children Cristina, Lisa and Elena, were eight, seven and five months.

The Cob Lane Close man added: "My wife died within a month or so of being told. The children were very young.

"It was a very hard time and that's why I am so proud of Christina.

"She has done all of this off her own back, she is an intelligent girl and could do whatever she wishes, but this is her dream."

Cristina has been dancing since she was five, including performing in Joseph in the West End.

She added: "It would be my dream to study at the academy. I want to be trained professionally.

"When I went for the audition, I sang, danced and did a monologue, and the overall place was amazing.

"The first year for the course is �20,000 and once I've passed that I should be given a scholarship.

"I know it's a big ask, but this really is a life-changing course and I would love to do it."

* If you want to help Cristina, contact Simon Wesson on the WHT newsdesk on 01707 384180.

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