Child Ambassador recognised by Prince Harry at Awards
A 12-year-old girl who is a Child Ambassador for Caudwell Children, the national charity that provides practical and emotional support to disabled children and their families, has received a prestigious WellChild Award from Prince Harry and the Duchess of Sussex.
Mia Thorne, from Pontypridd in Wales, was born with a form of cerebral palsy that affects her mobility and doctors didn’t expect her to be able to walk or talk.
Despite her disability Mia enjoys raising awareness of Caudwell Children, as it has supported her since she was young, and she also fundraises for the charity through a number of her own events.
These have included a glitzy Ball in Cardiff, that raised over £3,000, and a sponsored dance which netted over £400 towards a vital operation for a four-year-old school friend who also has cerebral palsy.
In total she has raised a staggering £90,000 for disabled children’s causes.
Mia received her ‘Inspirational Young person 11-14 years’ Award at a star-studded event at London’s Lancaster Hotel on Tuesday 15th October, 2019.
Mia, who was also recognised for her campaigning work around disabled access to children’s parks in Wales, was delighted to receive the award from the royal couple. As she explained: “I loved meeting Prince Harry and Meghan Markle as they do a lot of work for charities, and I couldn’t wait to tell them about Caudwell Children.
“I like to show that just because you have a disability it doesn’t mean you can’t do things and Prince Harry and Meghan really liked that.”
Prince Harry is a WellChild patron and has regularly attended the event whilst this was the second year that Meghan has been present at the Awards ceremony.
“Prince Harry also asked me if I watched the rugby,” continued Mia. “And he asked me about my campaigning.
“Meghan told me she was just 11 when she campaigned for change after a TV commercial she had seen.
“The Prince also told me to never let a closed door stop me and to keep doing the things that I’m doing and making a difference.”
Throughout the awards Mia sat on a table with the television presenters and singers Marvin and Rochelle Humes.
“It was really funny,” giggled Mia. “I took a photo of them and in the background Prince Harry was putting his thumbs up.”
Mia’s mum, Karene, was understandably proud that her daughter was recognised at the WellChild Awards. As she explained: “Mia uses a wheelchair when her joints become too painful, but she never complains, and despite this she’s always thinking about others.
“She’s turned her disability into a positive by focusing on what she can do rather than what she can’t.
“She’s really proud to be an ambassador for Caudwell Children, and she’s also a member of the Youth Parliament of Wales, where she tirelessly campaigns on issues around disability.
“So it’s really nice for her to be recognised, in such noble company, for everything that she does for disabled children.”
Trudi Beswick, Chief Executive of Caudwell Children, was delighted by the Award. As she exclaimed: “This is fantastic news and thoroughly deserved as Mia is a truly inspirational young lady who’s done some many amazing things in her life.
“She pushes herself to the limit, both mentally and physically, to support other disabled children and young people and everyone at the charity is extremely proud of her.”
Prince Harry is in no doubt about the significance of the Awards. As he explained: “These Awards were created to shine a bright light on an amazingly brave group of children and young people,
“Life for families caring for seriously ill children is exceptionally tough, and without Well Child it is even tougher.”
You can find out more about Caudwell Children’s services here.