Super cyclists Jeremy Collins, Malc Bennett and Vicky Farwig have just completed a 972-mile ride from Land’s End to John O’Groats so a local disabled girl can relax at home in comfort.
The intrepid trio – who all live and work in Dorset – were prompted to help leading UK children’s disability charity Newlife Foundation provide specialist seating for Alicia after reading her story in a local newspaper.
Alicia, from Poole, has Cerebral Palsy affecting all four limbs and epilepsy; she has recently undergone major surgery to her hips, having them broken, extended and pinned. She spends most of the day in her wheelchair, but urgently needs specialist seating so she can relax in comfort at home.
Mum Cindy Vincent said: “Alicia is coping very well following the operation, but when we are home together or out visiting friends, we’re all sitting on comfy chairs or the sofa but she has to remain in her wheelchair because she needs the postural support. Her only real alternative at the moment is to relax in bed, where she has a moulded supported sleep system.”
Alicia’s physiotherapist recommended a specialist seat, costing £1,431, to be specifically moulded for her use and with a mobile base so it can be wheeled around the home and out into the garden. With no statutory funding available locally, the family turned to Newlife Foundation for help.
Cindy said: “Alicia really does need somewhere where she can be comfortable, without having to go to bed. Her life expectancy is unknown so it is important for her to be able to enjoy what time she has.”
She added: “This is absolutely amazing news. There are so many lovely people out there and we are so grateful for what these three cyclists have done to help Alicia.”
Jeremy, Malc and Vicky cycled between 80 and 100 miles a day for 12 consecutive days, staying at campsites along the way. Vicky said: “The views have been amazing and the weather perfect – all apart from the last day when it rained. People we’ve met along the way have been very supportive, boosting our fundraising from friends, family and work colleagues. We have raised a grand total of £1,300.”
Newlife is increasingly looking to ‘local heroes’ like Jeremy, Malc and Vicky to help support disabled and terminally ill children in individual counties – and Newlife guarantees that 100 per cent of all monies donated or fundraised in Dorset can be ring-fenced to specifically provide vital equipment within the county.
If you would like to help a disabled child in Dorset, the Newlife Community Fundraising Team can be contacted on freephone 0800 988 4640. Any individual or organisation thinking of running a fundraising event is asked to contact the team, who can offer support and guidance.
To contact the intrepid trio, call 07795 120598.
Pictured: Alicia Collins.
Pictured: (from left to right) Jeremy, Vicky and Malc.