VIDEO: Little Olly defies odds to start crawling

Danielle McGurk and David Rodgers were devastated when their son Olly was diagnosed with a condition which causes partial paralysis.

Doctors said there was no way of knowing how severely Olly, 16 months, would be affected by hemiplegia which could prevent him walking or crawling.

Danielle McGurk  with her son

Danielle McGurk with her son

But despair turned to joy for the couple when their son recently started to crawl.

Danielle and David, of Pascal Close, Corby, had never heard of hemiplegia before Olly’s diagnosis but received help and support from the charity HemiHelp.

Now Danielle, 24, has organised events at Little Learners Nursery in Corby, where she works, to raise awareness of the condition and funds for the organisation.

She said: “Before birth Olly suffered a stroke which affected his left side.

“The doctors were unable to say what he would be able to achieve and that we would just have to wait and see. We had no expectations.

“We were delighted when he started crawling. His left fist is usually clenched and he has also been diagnosed with epilepsy but we do exercises with him every day and he has regular scans.

“He’s such a happy little boy and he’s doing really well.”

During Hemiplegia Awareness Week, from October 14 to 18, Little Learners in Occupation Road will be holding fundraising events to support HemiHelp.

On Monday there will be a session by Aardvark Soft Play and on Wednesday children will take part in Mitchy Tich yoga classes.

Both are giving their services free of charge.

On Thursday, October 17, staff and children will be wearing orange, the charity’s colour.

On Saturday, October 26, starting at 11am, staff, parents and children from the nursery will be holding a sponsored walk around the boating lake in their pyjamas and members of the public are invited to take part.

During the awareness week there will also be cake sales, supported by supermarkets in the town.

Danielle said: “HemiHelp gave us so much knowledge and hope and I wanted to show my support and raise awareness of the condition.

“When we found out about this condition we were devastated.

“At first, until we discovered Hemihelp, we had nowhere to turn to or talk to as no-one knew about this condition.”

The couple, who also have a daughter Isla, three, thanked Little Learners’ staff and parents for their support.

Danielle said: “Olly attends the nursery and everyone has been brilliant.”