Car seat and hoist
Charlie Wilcock – who her mum describes as “the cheekiest, bravest little girl” – has a condition called Polymicrogyria (PMG) which affects the development of the brain. In Charlie’s case, it also causes delayed development, weakened muscle tone meaning she is unable to walk unaided, difficulties in speech and other issues. Sadly, Charlie also has many seizures a day, some of which require rescue medicines to stop them.
Due to Charlie’s condition it’s crucial that she is able to travel in the main part of the family’s van so her parents have access to give her urgent rescue medication as she can have a seizure at any time.
However, as she has grown getting Charlie into the van had become an impossible task for her mum, Jamie, to manage on her own, leaving the family isolated and very limited on where they could go.
“Charlie is nearly nine now, so lifting her in and out of the van was too much for me on my own, which meant unless my husband was around we couldn’t go anywhere. It also meant Charlie’s grandparents weren’t able to take her anywhere without our support, as she is too heavy to lift.”
At almost £10,000, the cost of the equipment to help Charlie be more mobile was unaffordable.
Jamie and her husband reached out to several charities, including Children Today Charitable Trust, who were able to help provide the equipment, which is a lifetime investment for Charlie and her family.
“The car hoist and specialist car seat have made life so much easier for us as a family. We’re able to go to more places; say ‘yes’ to more things; travel that bit further. It’s little things like Charlie’s grandparents being able to take her to the park to see the squirrels, or to a routine doctor’s appointment whilst we are at work, that make such a big difference. It might seem trivial but I can’t tell you how much it helps. It just takes the pressure off us a bit and, of course, Charlie loves her “Ma and Pa”, so it’s great for her to enjoy spending more time with them.
“Charlie is also much more comfortable than being in her wheelchair in the van, and if she has a seizure we can be right next to her and give her rescue remedy straight away. The car seat’s harness, recline function, headrest and hip guides make it a much safer option if she has a seizure, so it’s given us peace of mind too, knowing she’s safe, comfortable and part of the journey rather than just a passenger in the back.
“It’s also given Charlie a sense of greater independence, as she’s able to get into the car hoist herself with some support, rather than being lifted, which as she gets older is great for her self-esteem and confidence. We’re so grateful to Children Today and all the other charities for their support.”