The parents of a three year old West Country girl who has severe cerebral palsy and relies on a wheelchair to get around have today spoken of their delight at seeing her keep up with her twin sister for the very first time with the aid of a new motorised Wizzybug.
The bright red fun buggy, based which sports a smiley face and eyes and is controlled by a colour coded joystick, now means little Sophia McCormack from Stockwood in Bristol can gain independence in moving around for the first time.
Now her family, who say it wouldn’t have been possible to get her the Wizzybug without some financial support, have expressed their thanks to the South West office of law firm Irwin Mitchell Solicitors who have funded the initial cost of the Wizzybug as well as its maintenance.
The firm, developed a partnership with the Bath Institute of Medical Engineering (BIME) who have set up the loan scheme, after it saw how much the fun bugs could improve the lives of their clients, many of whom have been victims of severe medical negligence, and other local disabled youngsters with severe mobility problems.
Julie Lewis, a partner and medical lawyer with the Bristol office of Irwin Mitchell explained: “We have seen firsthand how youngsters have benefited from a Wizzybug during their early years and how it has helped them gain independent movement, as well as teaching them from an early age how to use a powered wheelchair.
“The new loan scheme now makes the Wizzybug accessible to more local families with disabled children. For a child who cannot walk it makes such a huge difference to have an electronic buggy which has been designed especially for their needs. We are delighted to help support BIME’s loan scheme because we know that the Wizzybug changes youngsters’ lives for the better.
“Sophia has cerebral palsy and her mobility is very limited so we are very excited about being able to give her the opportunity to use a Wizzybug which will hopefully improve her quality of life.”
Claire McCormack, Sophia’s mother commented: “Both Sophia and Layla were born with cerebral palsy; however Layla’s mobility has not been as badly affected. Bringing up twins is never easy but when one has such severe mobility problems; it makes even the simplest of tasks very difficult.
“It is upsetting when she so desperately wants to move around and experience things for herself but she has to rely on me all the time.
“We are really excited about Sophia receiving the Wizzybug. Hopefully, now she will be able to make independent decisions herself and learn to interact with others. I am so thankful to everyone involved who has made this happen for her.”