Fethiye Times Charity News – our pick of recent news and events from local charities.
A generous donation from the Üzümlü Group
Wasim is an eight-year-old boy with Cerebral Palsy (CP).
What is Cerebral Palsy?
CP is a disorder that affects muscle tone, movement, and motor skills (the ability to move in a coordinated and purposeful way). CP usually is caused by brain damage that happens before or during a baby’s birth, or during the first 3 to 5 years of a child’s life.
This brain damage also can lead to other health issues, including vision, hearing, and speech problems; and learning disabilities.
There is no cure for CP; symptoms vary from person to person, but treatment, therapy, special equipment, and, in some cases, surgery can benefit children who are living with the condition and enable them over time to learn to communicate, do things for themselves, walk and even work.
Raising and caring for a child with cerebral palsy takes patience and understanding. In the UK there is a multitude of free resources available for parents who have a child with cerebral palsy. These resources include government programs, financial assistance and early intervention programs that provide free treatment for children with cerebral palsy who aren’t in school yet. There are also numerous support communities where parents can talk to people who have gone through what they are experiencing.
Wasim and his family do not have the luxury of benefitting from the support that a lot of us take for granted. They fled their home in Syria and took refuge here in Fethiye, a strange town in a country where they didn’t know anyone and couldn’t speak the language but where a relatively small Syrian community has settled in the past couple of years.
People living locally with the support of their friends have and continue to provide help and assistance that has enabled many of these newcomers to assimilate into their new homes and the wider Turkish community. This has included supporting Wasim to undergo an extensive and lengthy medical assessment that led to enrolment in a state school which he attends twice a week and has greatly improved his communication and motor skills and ability to undertake tasks like feeding himself independently.
A second outcome of the assessment entitles him to two 45 minute sessions of physiotherapy per week. However, because there is no local state provision he attends a private therapy centre which has to be paid for as this service does not extend to non-Turkish citizens. The physiotherapy is making a huge difference to Wasim and is helping him to overcome physical limitations by strengthening his leg and arm muscles, increasing mobility and self-confidence and laying the groundwork that will in time with perseverance enable him to walk instead of continued dependence on a wheelchair.
Wasim’s twice-weekly, 45-minute therapy costs 60tl per session (120tl or approximately £25 per week in total) and that includes return transfer from Karaçulha to the Ozel Nursel Ozdemir Ozel Egitim Okulu in Patlangıç where the therapy sessions take place.
These sessions are paid for by generous local people and their friends.
A generous donation
On Thursday the Üzümlü Group (Paddy Distin, Susan Meighan, Linda Edwards, Jo Braggins, Pat White) and Dilek Dinçer, the Director of FETAV, went along to meet Wasim, his therapist Aslıhan Kocatepe and Nichola Chapman who attends the physiotherapy sessions with Wasim
The Üzümlü Group wanted to help Wasim and made a generous donation of 1000TL towards his therapy.
The money was raised at a Retro Night – a 50s 60s 70s 80s night with fancy dress from your favourite decade, great music, and a prize draw.
The group also had an opportunity to have a look at the therapy room and see some of the activities and exercises that are included in Wasim’s therapy.
The Üzümlü Group
The Üzümlü Group (formerly known as the Üzümlü Ladies Group) holds fundraising events to help children in Üzümlü and the surrounding area.
They don’t have a shop and donations are mostly sold via their monthly Cake & Bake events held at the Wine House Üzümlü on the last Friday of every month and are very well supported by the people of Üzümlü.
If you would like more information please visit them on Facebook or email them at: email@example.com
Do you want to help?
Wasim’s family would like to extend a massive thank you to the Üzümlü Group for their very generous donation.
If you would like more information or to make a donation to Wasim’s therapy, please contact Nichola Chapman