Denton schoolgirl to defy cerebral palsy and take on the Great Manchester Run
Wednesday 2nd May 2018 @ 16:08 by Tom Greggan
Denton & Audenshaw News Tameside

A schoolgirl with cerebral palsy will defy the odds to take on the Simplyhealth Junior and Mini Great Manchester Run with the use of her walking frame.

12-year-old Katie, from Denton,  was diagnosed with cerebral palsy at the age of four and has always relied on a wheelchair or a walking frame.  The condition is life-long and affects her movement and co-ordination. It was caused by a bleed on the brain after she was born prematurely at 28 weeks.

She has undergone major surgery on a number of occasions to help her in her aim to be able to walk independently, but still relies on the use of a frame and chair for long distances. Katie may need further surgery in the future, but is determined not to let her condition define her.

Katie, who loves taking part in sports, sees everything she does as an achievement and has signed up to the Simplyhealth Junior and Mini Great Manchester Run on Sunday, May 20, to encourage people to look beyond her disability.

Katie’s mum Emma, 33, said: “Katie was born at 28 weeks weighing 1lb 5oz and was delayed in crawling and walking.

“At four years old she was diagnosed with Cerebral Palsy and we were told she would need to rely on the use of a frame and a wheelchair.

“She would walk on her toes and her feet turned in a lot so she underwent an operation to cut nerves in her spine that sent signals to her brain. Following this surgery, she needed another procedure and had to learn how to walk again and go through physiotherapy every single day.

“Her condition then got worse when she was 10  so she had metal plates put into her thigh bone, which was a huge operation.

“Despite going through so many operations in a short time, she is a very positive person who says she wants people to look at her beyond her cerebral palsy and see she is just a normal little girl. This is one of the reasons why she wanted to take part in the run.

Katie, a pupil at Denton Community College, said: “I want to show people that no matter what hurdle is put in front of you, anything is possible. It might take me a little longer to get to the finish line, but I will do it.”

You can support Katie’s fundraising at www.justgiving.com/crowdfunding/katieholmes.