Mighty Quinn (three) who has to wear a false leg is pride of Burnley after completing 30 mile challenge walk to raise £4,500
A Burnley tot, born with a rare defect that means she has to wear a false leg, has completed the '30 Miles My Way' challenge in aid of Royal Manchester Children’s Hospital charity.
Quinn Stansfield walked one mile a day in April and has raised the grand total of £4,500
And for her last walk Quinn received a surprise visit from the charity mascot Humphrey Bear who was there to welcome her home at the finish line.
Quinn loved meeting Humphrey and was especially proud to receive a medal from him which she wore with pride.
Her mum and dad, Natasha Thomas and James Stansfield, also surprised her with some personalised balloons.
Viv Williamson, Senior Events Manager for Royal Manchester Children’s Hospital charity said: “Quinn has been an absolute superstar throughout her fundraising. When you see her face light up with a big grin it really drives home why we exist as a charity- to put smiles on children’s faces."
When Quinn's mum spotted the challenge online she decided it would be the perfect way for her daughter to get some physiotherapy while also raising money for a fantastic cause.
The hospital holds a special place in both Quinn’s and Natasha’s hearts – not only is Quinn a current outpatient, Natasha was also treated there as a child for leukaemia when she was four, when the hospital was based at its old site in Pendlebury.
“Quinn is very independent and loves to boss us around,” said Natasha ( 28)
“She sometimes doesn’t like wearing her leg and needs to practice walking on it, so when we spotted 30 Miles My Way online we thought this was a great way of getting her to walk a bit further and get some practice in.
“We did a practice walk a few days before April to see if she could manage it. We were amazed when she completed it. We spurred her on and let her go at her own pace and take it easy, but we were so proud she managed the entire mile."
The family set an original fundraising target of £300 but when word spread aboutwhat this amazing little girl was doing donations came flooding in.
Quinn was born at St Mary’s Hospital in Manchester in September 2017. When Natasha was pregnant, scans showed that Quinn’s left leg hadn’t grown properly.
“I was at my 20 week scan and they told us about her leg,” said Natasha. “We were never able to find out a reason for it – I have a blood condition that Quinn also has called Von Willebrand's Disease but it’s very mild and it wouldn’t have caused the problem with her leg.
“We were devastated when we were told. Obviously the first thing we did was look it up on the internet and we couldn’t find any cases of it happening to babies in the UK.
"There is a rare birth defect called Amniotic Band Syndrome where bands of tissue in the womb tangle in the baby and cause an injury. But there are usually signs that this has happened, like remains of bands or scarring on the baby, but there wasn’t any evidence of this on Quinn.
"So it’s just a mystery as to why her leg didn’t grow.
“We were really worried at first, especially as she is our only baby, but actually the worry has subsided because we see how well she copes.”
Quinn is a feisty and happy three-year-old who loves nothing more than playing outside and making up songs on her walks. She loves choosing the pattern on her prosthetic leg when she goes for fittings.
When Natasha, who attended Worsthorne Primary School and the former Towneley High School in Burnley, explained to Quinn that she would be doing the sponsored walk to raise money for poorly children, the little girl was devastated that youngsters could get ill.
“I told her it was for the poorly children at the hospital,” said Natasha. “She was upset that there were poorly children out there, but then the smile on her face when I told her she would be helping them was just amazing.
The challenge was set by Manchester Foundation Trust Charity and invites fundraisers to walk, run, cycle or swim 30 miles in April. The distance was chosen as NHS nurses in Greater Manchester average about 30 miles a week walking up and down the wards.
Supporters can choose where their money goes and can select any of the hospitals in the Manchester Foundation Trust Charity family, which includes Royal Manchester Children’s Hospital Charity. Other hospitals in the charity’s family are: Manchester Royal Infirmary, Wythenshawe Hospital, Manchester Royal Eye Hospital, St Mary’s Hospital, Manchester University Dental Hospital, Withington Community Hospital, Trafford General Hospital and Altrincham Hospital.
All money raised will be spent on treatment, research and care projects that benefit patients and their families when they visit the hospitals.