Thanks to the generosity of Box Magazine subscribers, a young girl is able to walk tall.
Having a whole team of people helping with day-to-day activities sounds like quite the novelty, but for 15-year-old Elenor it’s a necessity. Diagnosed with cerebral palsy at birth, Elenor has a physiotherapist, occupational therapist and speech pathologist constantly working alongside her.
Elenor is one of 20,000 Australians living with cerebral palsy, a physical condition that affects movement. As with many conditions there are different levels of affliction. For some, cerebral palsy can be as mild as a weakness in one hand, whilst for others it equates to complete immobility. Although cerebral palsy is a lifelong disability, much can be done to reduce its impact, and the right therapy and equipment can make all the difference. This is where the Centre For Cerebral Palsy (CCP) comes in.
The CCP has been providing therapy and equipment for Elenor since she was two-years-old, working with Elenor, her family and her school to help her achieve her goals and develop her independence. However as Elenor is getting older, she is quickly outgrowing the equipment she so vitally needs, such as foot splints.
“Elenor’s last pair of foot splints lasted nearly two years, until she outgrew them,” says Kathy Kane from the CCP. “She wore them every day, never wanting to the leave the house without them, especially if going shopping,” she adds.
Thanks to Box Magazine subscribers, ToyBox and the Centre for Cerebral Palsy have been able to purchase Elenor a brand new pair of foot splints to ensure she maintains her freedom and continues to develop her movement.
“The splints ensure Elenor continues walking tall with confidence and falls less,” says CCP Physiotherapist Megan Jordan. “They also keep Elenor’s feet and ankles in good alignment to protect her joints while she is exercising, and provide pressure which helps her to walk more efficiently.”
The CCP allocate more than $300,000 per annum towards helping individuals like Elenor, as therapy and equipment replacement can become incredibly expensive for the family.
“Children with cerebral palsy require specialised equipment to assist them with daily activities. It may also be recommended they attend one-on-one swimming lessons, gymnastics, dancing and other activities to assist with their development. These activities can be expensive, and if they are required frequently on top of therapy appointments, it can impact on the parents’ ability to work a full-time job,” Megan notes.
Elenor’s mum Helen says her family are extremely grateful for the support they have received from ToyBox and the Centre for Cerebral Palsy. “These splints will help Elenor do her exercises which will strengthen her core muscles so she will be able to walk better and lead a more independent life. She is quite determined that she is going to walk completely unaided,” Helen says.