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A wheelchair could change this little girl's life
THIS cute little girl makes everyone’s heart melt but she now needs your help.
Twenty-month-old Rosalie Rice-Stephens can’t walk or crawl and yearns to play with her three-year-old brother, Samuel, and sisters, Gracie, aged six, and Antonia, aged five.
Rosalie has spina bifida, hydrocephalus, and talipes in both feet.
Surgeons are so impressed with her courage, they call her ‘the little smiler’ because she never cries.
Her parents, Andrea, aged 26, and Lee, aged 27, believe a wheelchair could give her more independence.
She can’t get one on the NHS until she is three.
They are organising a coffee afternoon on Saturday, November 3, from 11am to 2pm, at The Blundell Arms pub in Hale Road, to help raise £1,800.
Mum-of-four Andrea, of Francis Close, Ditton, Widnes, said: “She is a star, a proper little fighter with everything she has been through.
“They call her the smiler when she goes into hospital. She doesn’t cry and melts everyone’s heart.”
Rosalie had surgery only hours after she was born to stem her spinal fluid.
Since then, she has had countless operations to drain a shunt fitted into her spine.
Andrea, a former Bankfield pupil, said: “Even when her shunt is blocked, she is always smiling. She is fantastic.
“She is a very clever little girl. A wheelchair would give her freedom.
“She wants to play with our other children. They’re all running around and she can’t get to them. It’s heartbreaking to watch.
“We feel so sorry for her. We haven’t put her in her own bedroom yet as we are petrified she could come to harm.
“We all protect her and wrap her in cotton wool but we want her to be able to get about on her own.”
Rosalie has been wearing special boots and constantly has her legs in plaster to treat her club feet.
Andrea explained: “Doctors say she will walk naturally, with a limp or to the side, but they can’t give us a time. She gets physio. “We take each day as it comes.”
Andrea hopes to set up a support group for parents of children with spina bifida.
She said: “Our advise is don’t look in the internet as soon as you get told about your baby. That’s the worst thing you could possibly do.
“Spina bifida babies are strong. You’ve got to give them a chance.”
Rosalie’s dad, Lee, who gave up his job as an account executive at 02 in Preston Brook, Runcorn, to help look after her, will be having his leg waxed at the charity fun day.
Her uncle Adam Hall, aged 26, and family friend, Roy Rowlinson, aged 28, will also be having their hair removed.
Peppa Pig will be making a special appearance.
Home baked cakes will be on sale, alongside a raffle and tombola.
Andrea is planning a ladies night next month to raise more funds.
Rosalie Rice-Stephens Picture: Dave Gillespie DGM301012