Cash pours in for Wigan youngster to have life-changing medical treatment abroad
Generous friends, family and even strangers have dug deep to help pay for a six-year-old girl to have potentially life-changing treatment abroad.
Lucy Campbell launched an appeal to raise £70,000 to send her daughter Hallie for medical treatment in Poland.
Other news: Fears over 'unsafe' Wigan Infirmary temperatures
In just over a week, so many donations have been made that she is almost halfway to her target.
More than 700 people have given money, ranging from gifts of a few pounds to hundreds and even thousands.
Lucy said she cried when she discovered one benefactor had given £10,000 to the appeal anonymously.
Many people also left moving messages offering their support to Hallie.
Lucy, who lives in Hindley, said: “It’s amazing. I never thought it would go off with a bang like this.”
She hopes donations will continue to pour in so the target will be reached quickly.
She will boost funds with a sponsored walk up Snowdon on September 7, when she aims to take Hallie to the summit.
Lucy said: “I want to say a massive thanks to everyone from us as a family. We can’t get over the support from everyone, the messages and people donating raffle prizes. Everyone has been so kind.”
Hallie was diagnosed with life-limiting condition aromatic amino acid decarboxylase deficiency (AADCd) when she was just six months old and cannot walk, talk or sit up.
It causes severe developmental delays, weak muscle tone, involuntary movement of arms and legs and painful seizures.
It is so rare that only around 130 people worldwide have the condition, including five in the UK, with Hallie being the only female.
She has had several operations during her short life and takes a cocktail of medications three times a day.
But new gene therapy surgery has become available, which could prevent the painful seizures which Hallie has every couple of days, sometimes lasting for hours.
The treatment is not available in the UK.
While a medical centre in Poland has offered to treat Hallie at the subsidised price of £70,000, the NHS declined to pay for it, so Hallie’s family hopes to raise enough money to foot the bill themselves.
A provisional date for the procedure has been scheduled for October.
Donations can be made at www.justgiving.com/fundraising/genetherapy4hallie.