Hugo Hammond is headed into the Love Island villa (Picture: Rex)
Hugo, who was born with clubfoot, which is when a baby’s feet turn inwards and under is among the 11 singletons to be heading into the Majorcan villa when the ITV2 show returns next week.
The former England Physical Disability cricket player is set to join the likes of ex glamour model Shannon Singh in a mission to find love.
Charities have applauded Hugo for landing a spot on the series and are hopeful that he will be able to raise awareness to viewers of the lives that people with clubfoot, also known as talipes, can lead.
MiracleFeet, a global non-profit working to end untreated clubfoot in 29 low- and middle-countries, is ‘grateful’ Hugo is raising awareness of clubfoot.
‘We applaud Hugo Hammond for overcoming the odds and showing the world that clubfoot didn’t prevent him from achieving his dreams,’ a spokesperson told Metro.co.uk.
Charities are excited for Hugo to raise awareness of clubfoot (Picture: Rex)
‘And we are so grateful that Hugo is bringing much-needed visibility to clubfoot – one of the most common birth defects in the world, affecting about 200,000 newborns every year.’
They added: ‘Today, a non-surgical treatment means that children born with clubfoot can live healthy, active, independent lives. In fact—if they receive appropriate care—most won’t remember having it by the time they are Hugo’s age.
‘They will never experience the pain, stigma, and isolation it causes when left untreated. By showing what people born with clubfoot can do and achieve, Hugo will help raise awareness for viewers who don’t realise this is a major physical disability in many parts of the world. That’s an important step in creating widescale access to care.’
Steps Worldwide, a major charity supporting children affected by lower limb conditions, agreed and said they are ‘delighted to see that a young man with this disability is appearing on Love Island, showing just what full lives, in every respect, that people with clubfoot can lead’.
Loredana Guetg-Wyatt told us: ‘And he’s certainly not the only one; we work closely with a young UK para-athlete who’s also studying for a PhD, a photographer who’s travelled the world, runners, Premiership football players and many more.
‘We also know that the better the treatment that children get, the more chances they have of life without complications later on, which is why we’re calling on the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE) to make the Ponseti method its official recommendation. Our motto is “we don’t take walking for granted” and we want all children with talipes to get the gold standard of care.’
Love Island is due to return to telly screens next Monday after with the last summer series axed due to coronavirus concerns.
Fronted by returning host Laura Whitmore, 36, the Irish presenter will be joined by the instantly recognisable voice of Love Island, her partner Iain Stirling, 33, as the pair guide us through the head-turning antics and tear-jerking heartbreaks.
Love Island kicks off Monday 28th June on ITV2.