37 year old urges public to support anniversary campaign
A 37-year-old woman from Leek, in Staffordshire, is urging the public to support a charity’s 20th anniversary campaign after it supported her 20 years ago.
Caudwell Children, the national charity that provides practical and emotional support to disabled children and their families, has launched its #Team20 campaign to celebrate its foundation in 2000, and throughout 2020 it’s encouraging people to engage with the charity in a number of ways.
Bosses at the charity say they want people to take part in fundraising events, volunteer for the charity, or raise awareness of Caudwell Children’s services as part of the #Team20 team campaign.
Bonnie Harris has spina bifida, a spine condition that can lead to weakness or total paralysis of the legs.
When she was 17-years-old Bonnie’s condition left her with little independence and her parents had to provide her with her everyday meals.
To build her confidence and self-esteem, and to give Bonnie the necessary skills to cook for herself, they applied to Caudwell Children, for an adapted kitchen that would suit her needs.
The kitchen, which cost several thousand pounds, was fitted into the family’s home in Wetley Rocks, in Staffordshire, and Bonnie says that it had a profound impact on her life. As she explained: “The work surfaces were much lower and I could also access the cupboards and hob, which was induction sensitive.
“This meant that the hob could detect the absence of a pan and it automatically switched off the heat if one wasn’t there, making it much safer for me to use.”
The adapted kitchen allowed Bonnie to make drinks and prepare food for herself and, importantly, she began to try her hand at cooking and baking.
“It was amazing experience and before I knew it I was creating plates of food for my family and friends, which I really loved,” Bonnie enthused. “Not only that my parents and brother could leave me alone in the house knowing that I could feed myself and this independence gave me so much confidence.
“It opened up so many opportunities and possibilities for me, it was brilliant!”
Bonnie, a Media Studies graduate from Coventry Hereward College, says that she’s particular fond of creating Chinese dishes. “lf I’m not ordering a Chinese I love making it myself,” she explained. “The kitchen helped me to develop my skills and there is nothing better than when people tell you that they like what you’ve cooked.”
Bonnie is encouraging people to support Caudwell Children’s #Team20 campaign throughout the year. As she exclaimed: “It’s a brilliant charity that helps so many people and changes lots of lives, giving them that sense of independence.
“They have had such an impact on my life, cooking and baking is the thing that I like to do the most and that wouldn’t be the case if they hadn’t supported me back in 2000.
“Their support also gave me the confidence to try new things and I’m much more active because of them.
“So I’m urging people to get involved in their #Team20 campaign, which will help to raise the funds needed to support even more people like me.”
Trudi Beswick, CEO of Caudwell Children, is delighted by Bonnies support. She said: “It only seems like yesterday when we agreed to fund Bonnies adapted kitchen.
“She’s come such a long way over the last 20 years and it’s wonderful to see how she’s developed.
“With the public’s help we can support even more disabled children and young people.
“You can get sponsored to run 20 miles, bake 20 cakes to sell at work, volunteer for us for 20 hours, or you could do a sponsored 20-minute static cycle ride to join our #Team20.
“Whatever it takes I want people to just get involved in this campaign in what is a very special year for the charity.”
For more information on how you can get involved in Caudwell Children’s #Team20 campaign visit the website here.