Young fundraisers tackle walk/bike ride to raise wheelchair money

TWO determined young children tackled a sponsored walk/bike ride in a bid to raise funds for a new powered wheelchair.

Layla Kinder, 5, has cerebral palsy which affects her mobility so she relies on using a wheelchair to get around and carry out day-to-day tasks.

Her parents – Gemma Butler and Emma Baxter – are fundraising for a powered wheelchair and need to raise just short of £5,000.

Thomas and Layla

So Layla’s friend Thomas Schofield came up with the idea of the young pair walking or riding one mile to raise some of the money needed.

And on Sunday, October 17, they made the journey from Ashton’s Mossley Road to the Believe and Achieve Trust base on Sugden Street – raising £128 in the process.

Thomas, 8, walked the distance rather than using his wheelchair while Layla, who attends Silver Springs Primary Academy, rode her specially adapted bike.

Gemma, from Stalybridge, said: “One mile to us is not that far but for a child with cerebral palsy, it is a massive achievement.

“Layla can’t walk or run, she crawls to around so this wheelchair will allow her to get about more easily and would make a massive difference to her.

“We had an assessment for a powered wheelchair but unfortunately got denied on the grounds that our house is too small.

“We were told that we would have to fund a powered wheelchair ourselves, and the cost is just short of £5,000.”

Layla and Thomas took about half an hour to complete their challenge and were supported by the trust’s mascot and trustees along with way, as well as family and friends, and the Civic Mayor of Tameside, Cllr Janet Cooper, who congratulated them at the finish line.

Gemma praised the help and support Layla has had already from the Believe and Achieve Trust, which provides sports and dance activities for children with disabilities.

She explained: “Last year we were fundraising for the adapted bike for Layla to use at school so she can join in things like cycling with the other children.

“A lady put us in touch with the charity and we got £800 towards the bike which was fantastic. We wouldn’t have got the bike so quickly without their help.

“They have done so much for Layla and have been amazing. It’s magical to be able to see her doing activities and sports like other children.

“They enable the children to so sports like boxing, rounders, tennis and football. It helps them lead a normal life and do things other children can do.”

• You can still support Layla and Thomas and donate by texting TOMLAY plus your amount to 70085 (maximum £20 donation by text).

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