After spending three months in a wheelchair, eight-year-old Annalise Shearing was inspired to give something back to those who helped her in her time of need.
Annalise’s mum, Hafwen Shearing, said a gate fell on her daughter’s foot and broke it when she was in grade 1.
“She broke three metatarsals and her cuboid in her foot, so as a result she was in a wheelchair for just over three months and then on crutches for a little while after that,” Ms Shearing said.
“During that time, StGiles was really great.”
The disability and health service supports people of all ages, including those with developmental delays or disabilities, or those who acquire a disability through an accident or illness.
“They gave us a wheelchair to use and they were really helpful and lovely.”
Ms Shearing said after the experience with StGiles, Annalise decided she wanted to purchase a “really shiny, special wheelchair” that she could donate to StGiles.
IN OTHER NEWS:
To do this, Annalise raised funds by selling silk scarves and glitter slime kits at markets and on a website she made herself.
“It took about three months to get the slime kits and scarves ready,” she said.
Ms Shearing said all up, Annalise raised about $1000.
Annalise said she originally aimed to save up for a pink wheelchair, but later decided on blue.
“The wheelchair arrived and it was blue, and then we put stars on the side, and she thought it might be a bit diverse for each gender,” Ms Shearing said.
Allied health general manager Ally White said the wheelchair would likely be used in a situation similar to when Annalise came to StGiles.
“I think there’ll be lots of kids who can benefit from that,” she said.
Ms White said a wheelchair was an expensive piece of equipment that children usually only need for a short period of time.
“It’s great that an experience as awful as a broken foot can result in something so lovely,” she said.
Occupational therapist Christopher Bryg said often people need a wheelchair in a time of emergency.
“It’s really hard to come by things like that really quickly, so it’s wonderful to have something that you can offer to people,” he said.
“It’s such a wonderful thing for a young person to do, to have such an amazing goal that’s contributing to the community.”