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Ten-year-old Noah Gee from Haywards Heath in West Sussex was able to get into the festive spirit and take part in his school’s Christmas play with his classmates, with help from his new walking frame. Noah’s mum Paula Gee was able to see her little boy on stage, smiling from ear to ear making Christmas extra special for the whole family.

This would not have been possible without the help of local heroes and River Island store chain rallying together to get Noah his special walking frame.

Following a media appeal for Noah being featured in the Mid Sussex Times on July 08, fabulous fundraisers donated £1095 and River Island funded the remaining amount of £699.

When you are asked to pay five pence for a carrier bag in a shop have you ever wondered what happens to the money? Well, in the case of River Island outlets – like the ones in West Sussex – profits from sales of carrier bags are donated to Newlife.

Noah is one of more than 140 children to benefit from this life-changing nationwide initiative.

Noah has Cerebral Palsy, global developmental delay and is registered blind. Noah’s walker was too small for him to use safely so he used his wheelchair all the time while at home and school. His school has one walker, but this was shared between all the children who needed it.

Mum Paula Gee said: “Noah would get bored very easily as he was unable to do anything independently. But since he’s received the walker it’s been amazing. It was so lovely to see him on stage with his classmates for the Christmas play. He has gained so much independence because he can now go where he wants and do things on his own again.”

Thanks to a ‘fantastic plastic’ initiative at River Island fashion stores and local heroes in West Sussex supporting Newlife Foundation for Disabled Children, the UK’s leading charity provider of specialist equipment for children with disabilities and terminal illness, was able to provide Noah with a new walker costing £1,974.

Paula added: “The new walker has added independence back into his life – Noah loves to dance and although he can’t move his legs properly he can shuffle his feet. He’s no longer bored just sitting in his wheelchair and is able to move around the house freely. He has the freedom to play with his friends as school. We are very grateful to all that made it possible for Noah to get his walker because he is no longer missing out.”

Newlife Foundation CEO Sheila Brown added: “As local authority budget cuts continue to bite, more and more families are turning to charities like Newlife for specialist equipment which can help transform young lives. Having the national support of River Island is an enormous boost for us.”

She added: “Anyone struggling to access equipment through their statutory services should call our Newlife Nurse Helpline – 0800 902 0095 (free from UK landlines and mobiles) to discuss their individual situation.”

If you would like to find out more about Newlife Foundation for Disabled Children’s range of practical support services go to

Newlife has funded specialist equipment for 83 children in West Sussex, at a cost of £93,7047. If you think you could help a local child, go to Sussex for further details.

Pictured: Noah Gee