A BRAVE five-year-old girl has received the Christmas present she could only dream of – a new powered wheelchair that means ‘a new lease of life.’
And the anonymous donor who provided the £350 to take Layla Kinder over the line did so after reading her story in The Correspondent.
The bubbly girl 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 – set the goal of getting a powered device and raising just short of £5,000.
And after 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, the coverage provided the key to getting the money.
After seeing our article, The Correspondent was contacted by the man who wanted to donate whatever they needed.
After learning of the £350 figure, he wrote a cheque that was gleefully received.
Gemma, of Stalybridge, said: “The donation means the world, the absolute world.
“Without people being so kind, we couldn’t have got what we needed so quickly for Layla.
“The Believe and Achieve Trust has been brilliant, we’ve had anonymous donations from people in the local community – none of this wouldn’t have been possible without them.
“The wheelchair will give her a new lease of life. It will mean independence, she could do her own thing without having Emma or I breathing down her neck and pushing her all the time.
“She can be free at school. When she does sports and dance, she could just go off and do it herself. It’ll be great for her.
“For Layla, independence is a massive thing. She’s so independent now but with not having a powered chair, that is restricted.
“She’s craving it. With this new chair, she’ll be off.
“Layla being independent will make a massive difference for me too. Say we’re out shopping and she wants to go and look at something, she could just go.
“We could say, ‘Well go on then.’ We could still be with her but not be breathing down her neck and pushing her constantly.
“She could go off, be free and just explore.”
Layla’s story has inspired the Ashton-based Believe and Achieve Trust to get involved and its founder and chief executive, Alison Williams, believes the donation will make a huge impact.
She said: “It’s going to be amazing and I know Layla herself when she comes to dance club and sports club.
“She’s so desperate to be independent and do things on her own.
“As soon as we knew this would make a difference to Layla, we’ve just done everything and this donation from this amazing man has made Christmas for us all.
“It means we can now go and purchase the wheelchair and to see Layla in it will be everything for us.
“And we hope to get the chair before Christmas. Seeing her in it would be the best Christmas present I could have.”
Even though the donors do not want to be named, Gemma certainly wants to find out who they are as she wants to than them in person.
She added: “Just let me know who you are, please.
“We could just say thank you personally and Layla can get you a thank you card and shake your hand. What they’ve done is just amazing, it really is.”