An Irish student who set up a GoFundMe page is overwhelmed by the response and generosity of the Irish people.
Éabha Wall who is a 4th-year biochemistry student is looking to raise €21,000 to undergo a life-changing treatment to "become bionic". Éabha's story has gone viral after she appeared on the RedFM podcast to discuss living with Cerebral Palsy and its impact on her mobility. Cerebral Palsy is the term broadly used to describe the impairment of motor structure within the body. The condition typically affects people who are born prematurely.
Éabha has not let the condition impact her life as she has been a cub scout, goalie for the under 9's team and has done everything from canoeing to horse riding. Last Friday was World Cerebral Palsy Day and it's when Éadbha launched the fund. Éabha announced she was a selected to undergo the treatment Exosym, a new treatment which will improve her way of life:
...I was a twin born at 28 weeks, weighing 2lbs 5oz and spent the first 3 months of my life in a special care baby unit in Cork, 2 weeks in the company of my twin sister Fionnuala, who sadly didn’t survive. At school I was inspired to pursue science at college and I am finally in my 4th year Biochemistry, although not without some struggles. It’s a tough course for a completely able-bodied student, not to mention my 5 ft 0” ‘physically challenged’ self, which brings me to my fundraising request: I have been accepted as a suitable candidate for the Exosym, a new piece of technology that could help me walk better, and improve my quality of life.While CP is described as non-progressive, gradual wear and tear on muscles and joints has taken a toll on my body. Day to day tasks and physical activity now require way more effort than before. Having CP means you use 3-5 times as much energy and fatigue is inevitable. Where once my wheelchair was reserved for long journeys, now I can't go anywhere without one. Anti-inflammatories and painkillers are now a necessity. I know that medicating my way through pain cannot continue without doing lasting damage...
The treatment would mechanically align Éabha's hip, knee and foot which would allow her to stride smoothly and access muscles she has not used. Eabha has spoke to others who have used the treatment with people noting the huge benefit it had to their way of life:
I have seen what ExoSyms have done for people with similar disabilities and disorders. I’ve spoken directly to ExoSym users who say it has dramatically reduced their pain levels and improved their stamina.
Éabha spoke to us earlier today and had this inspiring message: "I want to work so hard to make these work for me as well as possible so that I, in turn, could help someone else who might benefit from an Exosym".
With nearly €9,000 raised, Éabha is blown away by the generosity of people, especially Irish students, as 70% of the donations have come from students across the country and she would like to thank everyone who has contributed so far. To read more about Éabha's story and to donate to her treatment click here.