Magician Dynamo has said a trip to a Syrian refugee camp in Lebanon put his health battle, which has affected his ability to perform tricks, into perspective for him.
The performer recently revealed he has been suffering for the last eight months, after being hospitalised due to a bout of food poisoning combined with his Crohn’s disease, and that he also developed arthritis as a side effect.
He has now described how he is working with a charity to get half a million Syrian refugee children into education, and that he is keen to focus on helping others rather than his own problems.
Dynamo told BBC Breakfast: “I wasn’t able to perform much magic because of my illness so it allowed me to go out there and take a bit of time, do something to help other people and really focus my mind on not thinking about my illness and thinking about helping other people.
“Being out there, it really put into perspective what Syrian children and what Syrian families (are) having to go through.
“Makes my illness feel like nothing in comparison, and it kind of helped put it in perspective for me.”
He said that he has “taken a lot of this time to re-evaluate my approach to magic and also to certain elements of life in general”.
Dynamo, real name Steven Frayne, said he was inspired by a recent trip to Lebanon, and that he has been working with global children’s charity Theirworld.
He added: “My main focus by the end of the year is to get half a million Syrian refugee children into school because they’re not being educated, and that’s something that needs to be addressed.
“They were promised an education from the governments who met in 2016 at the UN, and they promised all this money to get these kids in school and they didn’t deliver.
“So they’re meeting again in a few days and I’m going to go there in person.”
Dynamo said he would take a petition “signed by lots of people” to “remind the governments that these kids are still not in school”.
Of his own career, the 35-year-old TV star said he was working with medical professionals to get himself to a place where he could return to performing and show off some new magic tricks.
He said the arthritis meant he “won’t be able to use my hands like I normally would”.
“I’m working with a physio and doctors to find a way to get the right medication and the right treatment, so I can hopefully come back on stage and show you some new magic,” he said.
“I’m always working on new ideas and I’ve got many ways to do my tricks, and some of them don’t need as much dexterity, I use my mind, which is still intact.”