A CHARITY that has helped a little girl walk independently is looking for runners to take part in the Essar Chester Half Marathon.

Five-year-old Evaline Weaver from Ellesmere Port has been attending Stick ‘n’ Step for three years, and in the words of her parents Becky and Tim, has made ‘incredible progress in a relatively short time’. She is now walking independently, which is something they weren’t sure would ever happen.

Evaline was born prematurely at 33 weeks by emergency caesarean section, and although her parents were advised that there might be problems due her premature birth, it was only at around 10 months old they noticed problems with her balance and lower body movements. Evaline was 21-months-old when a MRI scan showed periventricular leukomalacia (PVL), and this confirmation of damage to her brain resulted in a diagnosis of cerebral palsy.

When she first started coming to the centre, Evaline was only able to crawl and roll, sit cross legged on the floor, stand on her tip toes with support, and was using a walking aid to get around.

Becky said: “It was pretty difficult at first because I didn’t know anybody else with a child who had a similar condition, but coming to Stick ‘n’ Step has been amazing.

“After the initial assessment Tim and I hoped that the Conductive Education Programme would help Evaline’s mobility and confidence but I don’t think either of us ever thought she would come as far as she has, so quickly.”  

Evaline walking

She added: “We are far less worried about Evaline’s future now than we were a couple of years ago as we can clearly see how much more mobile, independent and confident she has become since she started at Stick ‘n’ Step.  We are just so thankful that we discovered the charity when we did, as we know that with their help, Evaline will be encouraged to keep on achieving the new goals and milestones that are set for her each year.  Thank you Stick ‘n’ Step for giving Evaline the chance of leading an independent adult life”

Stick ‘n’ Step is a charity based on Wirral that works with children and young people who have cerebral palsy, and they have achieved some amazing results.  Conductive Education uses activity based tasks, songs, massage, play and games to encourage the children to learn many of the basic tasks and key life skills that most people take for granted. Things like learning to walk, talk, self-feed, use the toilet independently and dressing and undressing. 

Stick ‘n’ Step is now looking for people interested in supporting them by running the Essar Chester Half Marathon on Sunday, April 29. 

They have a limited number of free places available and participants just have to commit to raising a minimum of £150 sponsorship.  All funds raised will be used to provide sessions for Evaline and and other children like her.

For more details or to express an interest call Hettie or Janet on 0151 638 0888.

Bekcy added: “I really hope that many people will want to take part in the 2018 Essar Chester Half Marathon to help the charity, because it relies totally on charitable donations”. 

For further information visit www.sticknstep.org