That said, Jacqui and I are not the kind of people who sit on our backsides and wait for the world to come to us. Once over the initial shock we were determined to ensure Lauren has every opportunity in life despite her disability. We were introduced to a superb centre for deaf and hard of hearing children where we could get the expert assistance that Lauren and we needed.
offers an impressive range of support and services for deaf and hard of
hearing children. Based in London, CP offers a unique combination
of nursery education and therapy, provided by a highly trained team of speech
and language therapists, occupational therapists, specialist teachers and a
chartered psychologist. Lauren attended from 6 weeks old and benefitted
enormously from their 'whole child' approach to encouraging listening and
speech. More information about CP can be found at www.speech-lang.org
My wife and I are grateful for everything this incredible charity has provided both in terms of their professional and emotional support and we want to give them something back. This brings me neatly onto my charity challenge - the Ramshackle Rally!
For those that know me, I am a self confessed car-nut! If it has four wheels, some seats, runs on petrol then the chances are I will know something about it. So I thought why not combine my passion with raising some money for charity. Before you think I will simply be driving from A to B in a comfortable motorway cruiser, the Ramshackle Rally challenge is to drive from London to Valencia, Spain (2000km) in a car that costs no more than £150 (must be MOT'd and taxed). In this Top Gear'esque challenge my co-drivers are two long-time buddies and car enthusiasts Ashley 'funny boy, funny feet' Winston and Lee 'I can fly a stunt kite' Berridge. We pride ourselves on being a team with huge enthusiasm but very little competence...our wives all raised their eyebrows then groaned when we told them what we are doing! (www.ramshacklerally.com)
We sourced a Peugeot 405 estate that has done quite a few miles on ebay (nearly 200,000) and when we told the seller what we were doing, he VERY kindly gave the car to us gratis as his contribution to the challenge. Mark, thank you once again.
We set of on August 20th for 4 days of driving, breaking down, criss-crossing through France, Italy, Switzerland and Spain until we reach Valencia. The objective is to help other cars on the rally if they break down and vise versa and we will be set a number of challenges along the way...should be a lot of fun, I just hope that our european breakdown cover is comprehensive! We will be keeping a blog of our progress and of course the more money we can ran raise for CP the better!
Please donate as much or as little as you can, it all adds up. If any other families out there benefit half as much from these incredible charities as we have then that would be a wonderful thing.
Thanks very much for reading.