A YOUNG girl left in a wheelchair by a rare ailment has vowed to complete this weekend’s Santa Dash for Brian House Children’s Hospice to show solidarity to other unwell children.
Kaitlyn Hacking had to undergo a serious operation in October to ease a condition, Slipped Upper Femoral Epiphysis (sufe), which affects just one in 50,000 young people.
The delicate operation to pin her slipped left leg back into her hip has left her in a wheelchair while she builds up strength in her legs again.
It was while watching Children In Need that the brave 11-year-old decided to raise money for those also in need of medical support.
While Kaitlyn, of Elvaston Road, Carleton, is aiming to be back on her feet again by Christmas, she knows the children at Brian House are in need of much more help.
The youngster is hoping to raise hundreds of pounds for the Bispham unit for children with life threatening or life limiting conditions.
Kaitlyn said: “I realised how hard it is for little children in wheelchairs all the time and I just wanted to help them.
“The children at Brian House are probably around my age and I’d like to help.
“I feel sorry for them, I know how they feel in some ways.”
The Hodgson Academy pupil has already smashed her original target of raising £200, and with £241 in the pot she is now aiming for much more.
Mum Marica, 39, said she is immensely proud of her daughter’s determination.
She said: “Around the time of Children In Need Kaitlyn said ‘Can you imagine being in a wheelchair all your life? It’s really hard’. It’s really turned our lives upside down.
“The whole thing has really shocked her so the Santa Dash and fund-raising is a good distraction by thinking about helping other children. She’s a lot of stamina to get through it all.”
Marica and son William, eight, will be completing the Santa Dash – the annual charity run by hundreds of santa-clad families – with Kaitlyn at 10.30am on Sunday, from Sandcastle Waterpark at South Beach to North Pier, and back again.
To sponsor Kaitlyn in the Santa Dash, visit www.justgiving.com/kaitlyn-hacking