Home   Ashford   News   Article

Can you help little Charlotte get back on her feet?

Charlotte Whale could be cured by a pioneering stem-cell operation. Picture: GARY BROWNE
Charlotte Whale could be cured by a pioneering stem-cell operation. Picture: GARY BROWNE

THE goal for this little girl is a £15,000 operation, which could allow her to walk for the first time.

The pioneering stem cell surgery in the Dominican Republic could change 10-year-old Charlotte Whale’s life forever.

That is why, with the help and support of friends and family mum Lori has set up the special Help a Whale 2 Walk account at Ashford’s HSBC bank.

She needs to raise the £15,000 plus accommodation and travel costs so the operation can take place this summer.

The news that an American doctor is performing this treatment is the first offering of a potential cure for Charlotte. It is a lifeline they are desperate to accept so that at long last she can lead an independent life.

Charlotte was 14 months old when she caught a virus. Within seven weeks she had lost her sight, speech and hearing and had no control over her bodily functions.

Doctors and experts at Guy’s Hospital baby unit failed to diagnose the cause for the desperately ill tot.

Her mother said: "They told me she would not make it to her second birthday and she was sent home. I was told that I should arrange her funeral.

"She was given no painkillers or treatment but we struggled on with a nurse coming in daily. Then we had some miracles as every time she got an illness things improved.

"At three she caught chickenpox and her eyesight returned. Then she had her tonsils out to relieve a sore throat and both her speech and hearing came back."

She still has little balance, so cannot walk without falling, and problems with one hand, leaving her unable to pick up anything.

But with the aid of a wheeled walking frame, a lap-top computer and a classroom carer she is a popular and active pupil at Oak Tree Primary School in South Ashford.

She is known as a class chatterbox and art and physical education are her favourite subjects.

Charlotte, of Bean Close, Great Chart, said: "I want to walk and play with my friends without always having my mother or a carer with me. It is a dream that I can be normal and I hope I am able to have the treatment."

Her mother added: "Nobody in this county has been able to diagnose her problems but this doctor has treated many children with similar problems and his pioneering treatment has cured them so I want Charlotte to be given the same opportunity."

* Anyone able to support the family can contact them on 07837 840277.

Close This site uses cookies. By continuing to browse the site you are agreeing to our use of cookies.Learn More