Fundraiser launched to buy new wheelchair for brave Wolverhampton schoolgirl Heidi

A Wolverhampton family is on a mission to raise more than £16,000 to buy a 12-year-old girl a new wheelchair to help her enjoy trips to the beach and woodland.

Heidi Prescott-Booth with mum Katie Prescott
Heidi Prescott-Booth with mum Katie Prescott

Heidi Prescott-Booth, who lives in Bradmore, has a rare muscle wasting disease called spinal muscular atrophy (SMA).

She lost her ability to walk just more than a year ago, and also had to have spinal fusion due to the muscles in her body being unable to support her spine.

Currently Heidi, who is in Year 8 at St Edmund's Academy, is able to get about using her everyday wheelchair, but her family are now fundraising for an all-terrain chair which would allow her to go to the beach, on woodland trips, and generally enjoy a more active life.

Heidi lives with her mother Katie, her six-year-old sister Delilah and stepdad Andrew.

Mother Katie Prescott said: "Her current wheelchair is brilliant for everyday city life, and will continue to be used as so, this isn’t a replacement for that.

Heidi and mum Katie

"But we are so restricted as a family now in what we can do that we feel it’s time that we had a second all-terrain powered wheelchair that would allow Heidi to access the great outdoors without being limited.

"With having an active younger sister and our family dog, it would be nice to involve her in trips to Cannock Chase and the lakes. This chair can go through snow and mud, on the beach, and all sorts. It would really get her out into the fresh air. She can get a bit frustrated and sad and locks herself in her bedroom on her iPad. This would be so good for her mental health.

"It would be amazing to be able to do things that every other family does, and give Heidi the ‘normal’ life she deserves and shouldn’t miss out on just because of her disability."

Back in March, Heidi was given the go-ahead to receive treatment to build up her strength – the family had spent 18 months campaigning for the only-known drug, Spinraza, to treat her muscle-wasting disease to be approved for use on the NHS.

The National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE) had previously not recommended it due to concerns over its long-term effectiveness and high cost. Heidi is due to have her next dose in November.

More than £1,500 has already been raised for the Wheels For Heidi fundraiser. Visit uk.gofundme.com/f/wheels-for-heidi to donate.

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