£15k wheelchair gives Eleanor a new lease of life

A Wrexham woman born with a rare genetic order that means she’s only 3ft 4ins tall says she’s been given a new lease of life after the Steve Morgan Foundation bought her a £15,000 state-of-the-art wheelchair.

Eleanor Taraborelli is 23 but says she regularly gets confused for being a child because she has a condition called Morquio syndrome, which is a type of dwarfism.

The condition affects a sufferer’s bones and spine, organs and physical abilities and means Eleanor is unable to walk so is very reliant on a wheelchair.

However her old wheelchair was unable to support her body so she applied to the Steve Morgan Foundation for help in buying a top-of-the-range model costing £15,000.

She said: “It’s gives me more independence and it doesn’t hurt my back like the old one because it’s made to measure and has a special support. I’m so grateful to the Steve Morgan Foundation.

“Because of my size people stare at me all the time.  Despite being 23 they think I’m a little girl. It makes me feel a bit rubbish.”

Mum Dawn said her daughter wasn’t diagnosed with Morquio syndrome until she was two but she already suspected something was wrong.

“I’ve got two older children and Eleanor couldn’t sit with her legs in front of her because she has no balance,” she said.

“They did a blood test and the consultant pointed to a photo in a book and said ‘this is what your daughter is going to look like’.”

Eleanor needs round-the-clock care and her mum said her wheelchair is the only way she can get about.

“Eleanor spends long periods of time in her wheelchair but the back support in the old one was uncomfortable and she couldn’t recline,” said Dawn.

“The occupational therapist recommended a customised one but that cost £15,000 and there was no way we could afford that.”

They applied to the Steve Morgan Foundation and were awarded the money from their Enable Fund.

Dawn said: “It’s brilliant. Eleanor has had to shield because of Covid but when she’s able to get out and about this will change her life.”

Steve Morgan said: “I’ve always said it’s not the amount of money you give out but the difference it makes to people’s lives. Last year we gave out a record-breaking £27m to support charities impacted by Covid-19 but it’s rewarding to see £15,000 can make such a difference to someone’s life.”

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