Fourteen-year-old Michelle Ferguson* has hydranencephaly, a rare condition in which most of the cerebral hemispheres are absent and replaced with fluid. This has left Michelle profoundly disabled and her future is uncertain. She requires one-on-one care and assistance 24 hours a day.
Michelle has been in permanent care with Sandra and Graeme Ferguson since she was 10-months-old. Sandra and Graeme also have three adult children and seven grandchildren that love spending time with Michelle.
Sandra says that Very Special Kids Hospice enables them to take much-needed breaks.
“At first I thought we wouldn’t need it and I didn’t want Michelle going anywhere without me. But now I know they look after her beautifully at the hospice,” she says.
The family have also attended Very Special Kids family camps at Lord Somers and local activities that provide them with the opportunity to meet other parents and share information and experiences.
“It’s really good for us to socialise with other parents who are in the same boat. We don’t have to explain anything to anyone,” Sandra says.
A Very Special Kids Family Support Worker in Ballarat provides support to 35 families in the Grampians region including counselling and advocacy, and coordinating local programs and events that provide families the opportunity to meet each other and share information and experiences.
Very Special Kids supports 35 families in the Grampians, and 900 across Victoria, that are caring for children with life-threatening conditions, by providing 24-hour nursing care at Very Special Kids Hospice and family support services.
A Family Support Worker in Ballarat provides support to families in the Grampians region including counselling and advocacy, and coordinating local programs and events that provide families the opportunity to meet each other and share information and experiences.
It costs $7 million per year to operate Very Special Kids, with all services free-of-charge to families. Please help us continue to support children like Michelle, and their families, by donating to the Very Special Kids Piggy Bank Appeal.
The Piggy Bank Appeal will be coming to the Grampians:
- Thursday, 10 September 2015, Commonwealth Bank Stawell, 10am to 1pm
- Thursday, 10 September 2015, Commonwealth Bank Ararat, 1.30pm to 4pm
- Thursday, 10 September 2015, Red Lion Hotel Golden Point, 6pm to 8pm
- Thursday, 24 September 2015, Commonwealth Bank Daylesford, 10am to 2pm
- Saturday, 26 September 2015, Bridge Mall Ballarat, 10am to 3pm
- Saturday, 26 September 2015, Blue Bell Hotel, Wendouree 5pm to 8pm
*Name has been changed for privacy