Monday, 13 February 2012
The above photo is of a girl that many of you may recognise. Aila was born and raised in Horsham and she and her family have been active parishioners for many years. In many ways she is like your typical sixteen year-old; she likes clothes, shopping, Lady Gaga, she is funny, clever and creative. But, on a more sombre note, there is one thing that sets her apart from her peers. Aila has Friedreich's Ataxia, a neurological disorder, which affects her mobility, balance and speech.
Since this was diagnosed two years ago Aila has had to grow up very quickly and, along with her family, try to adapt to the ways this condition has so radically changed her life. It has been a long and arduous process, something that no girl of her age should have to go through, but she and her parents and brothers have supported each other with mind-blowing love and courage through it all.
And now they need our help. With Aila's balance and mobility worsening every day (she has to use someone's arm for support when walking and will soon be in a wheelchair full-time) she is finding having to go up and down the stairs in her house both difficult and dangerous. The plan is to build a ground floor extension with a bedroom and bathroom as well as making the doorways in the living room etc. wide enough to accommodate the wheelchair. The council are funding the bulk of the project but there is a shortfall of £16,000 which the family have to meet. Her parents have therefore started "Aila's Fund" to help raise the money needed so they can get the build underway.
Horsham has always been a warm, welcoming and generous parish and many have already approached her mum and dad promising to help in whatever way they can. This weekend the Pro-Life group are holding a cake stall with all funds going to Aila and on Saturday 24th March Bousfield:PHOTO will be hosting photo sessions by appointment again with all money raised going to Aila and a whole host of other events in the near future. Please support this cause with prayer and, if you are able, come to some of the events. Spread the word!