Jump to Main ContentJump to Primary Navigation
Top

"The world is not indifferent after all" Man with Down's syndrome moved to tears after mum's Facebook campaign sparks 30,000 cards for his 30th birthday

Manuel-Parisseaux.jpg

A man with Down's syndrome received more than 30,000 cards for his 30th birthday after an appeal by his mum on Facebook went viral.

Frenchman Manuel Parisseaux, who turned 30 on Saturday, was moved to tears by the surprise of hundreds of thousands of birthday wishes sent to him from all over the world. The number of cards and gifts became so great that a truck was needed to deliver them and the family had to use their neighbour's garage in their hometown of Calais, France, to store them in.

"I don't understand why it got so big. Manuel is like us, he is moved to tears," Manuel's mother Jacqueline Parisseaux told AFP.

"We got cards from everywhere: Sri Lanka, Chicago, Hong Kong and sometimes with children’s drawings."

cards

Manu opening his cards with his mum and dad

Jacqueline originally posted a message on her husband's Facebook page on November 3. She explained that their son "loves receiving postcards" and asked friends and family to send cards to help celebrate his big day.

"My son Manuel is going to turn 30 years old on November 22. He has Down's syndrome," the message read. 

"I'm writing to ask you to take a couple minutes to send him a little card and to pass this information on to your friends so the chain doesn't get broken.

"I thank you all for your gesture, which will make my Manu so happy."

Jacqueline said the request, which contained the family's full address, "snowballed" within hours of her sharing it. 

"We had a few hassles with Facebook because our post was shared 120,000 times and they thought we were a business or that we were running a scam," she said.

cards

Manu and his parents with just some of his thousands of cards

Before long, cards started arriving for Manuel - first by the dozen, and then by the thousand, with a truck needed to deliver them in crates.

A rush of 3,000 on Manuel's birthday alone this weekend pushed the total number of cards to more than 30,000, including gifts of chocolate, key rings and cakes.

"Be patient because Manu wants to open his cards one by one," an update from his family on Facebook read. 

Manu wants to keep and display all the cards he receives, although the family says that they will be unable to reply to each and every message. 

"We would never have imagined the impact that a simple internet message could have in a few days," Jacqueline told the French newspaper La Voix du Nord. "We are surprised by this outpouring of generosity and messages of support and kindness. The world is not indifferent after all."

Around one in every 1000 babies born in the UK will have Down’s syndrome, a genetic condition caused by the presence of an extra chromosome 21 in the body’s cells.

Read more about random acts of kindness in our round-up of the world's most inspiring and generous gestures.

Photos: Facebook/ La Voix du Nord

Related

hero.jpg

Beauty secrets: make-up, skincare and hair advice from Stylist readers

baby.jpg

Online store comes under fire for selling porn-themed babygrows

2. Benugo Bar & Kitchen secret drawing room.jpg

10 of the best library bars in London

Comments

More

Sue Perkins on the moment she fell in friend-love with Mel Giedroyc

The Bake Off star has a beautiful point to make about platonic friendships

by Amy Swales
24 Jul 2017

The best A-list Instagrams from the weekend

From Nicole Scherzinger's pamper session to Alicia Keys' colourful new hairstyle

by Nicola Colyer
24 Jul 2017

Princes William and Harry reveal the last words they spoke to Diana

“That phone call sticks in my mind quite heavily.”

by Sarah Biddlecombe
24 Jul 2017

Pirelli’s all-black 2018 calendar makes a statement about inclusivity

The tyre manufacturer aims to continue shaking off its reputation with a beautiful fairy-tale shoot

by Amy Swales
21 Jul 2017

The best A-list Instagrams from the week so far

From Nicole Scherzinger's glam squad to Reese Witherspoon's hair hack

by Nicola Colyer
21 Jul 2017

Lana Del Rey is changing her aesthetic because of Donald Trump

"I’m not going to have the American flag waving while I’m singing Born to Die."

by Moya Crockett
20 Jul 2017

BBC ever so politely shuts down backlash over first female Doctor Who

Some “unhappy” viewers contacted the broadcaster about Jodie Whittaker’s casting

by Kayleigh Dray
20 Jul 2017

“I have my demons”: Neelam Gill on racism, modelling and mental health

Stylist’s cover star is outspoken, honest and on the up

by Anita Bhagwandas
19 Jul 2017

Actresses who have braved playing iconic women from history

As Felicity Jones signs up to play Ruth Bader Ginsburg, we take a look at other movie stars who have played real-life legends

by Moya Crockett
19 Jul 2017

Madonna launches legal battle to get her Tupac breakup letter back

The emotional letter was set to go up for auction – but Madonna says it was taken without her consent

by Moya Crockett
19 Jul 2017