A Corby girl who has had to undergo numerous surgical procedures since the day she was born has raised more than £1,000 for two different causes.
Laura Bissell’s daughter Ella, who turns 10 today (Friday), was born with VACTERL association, a series of genetic abnormalities which has affected many parts of her body including her vertebrae, ribs and kidney.
She has also had to undergo open-heart surgery and had another major operation just last week.
But despite her condition Ella’s mum says she always has a smile on her face.
She said: “She has had to learn to live with different aspects of her condition that make life more difficult for her than a normal girl her age.
“Yet she always has a smile on her face and is a wonderful happy girl.
“She recently met up with other children and adults suffering with the same condition at a VACTERL association get-together and this was very liberating and enlightening for her.
“The group is only small and is starting to try to raise enough money to become a registered charity.
“We all really wanted to help after the support they had given Ella and knew they would continue to do so.
“Ella decided that she would cut off her hair to try to raise money for the group, but also knowing at the same time she could donate her hair to the Little Princess Trust.
“Ella has so far raised more than £1,100.
“This has been done via sponsorship donations and a bake sale.
“Also her younger brother Jamie’s rugby team, the under-12s at Stewarts & Lloyds in Corby, ran a joint half-marathon.
“Erik Lander from Top Spot in Corby also gave up his time to cut Ella’s hair for free.
“Ella has been so proud of what she has achieved and it has inspired her to carry on through some difficult times with her most recent operation.”
Ella’s fundraising page has now closed but people can still donate to the VACTERL association support group.