How We Have Helped

Below are just a few examples how GeeWizz has been able to help change the lives of disabled people, their families and carers, or those affected by cancer.

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Exciting news to share: we have just received a very generous donation from Liz and Tony Nicholl at Churchill Catering, helping fund Kim’s prosthetic sports blade!

George Woodward

For the first three years of his life, George Woodward had never been able to smell grass, bend down and touch flowers or pick up things from the floor himself. George (aged 4) has Spinal Muscular Atrophy Type 2, which affects motor neurons in the spinal cord eventually, leading to severe disability.

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Living with the rare and debilitating condition never stopped George’s zest for life and a smile was never far away. He is now able to do and enjoy all the things most families take for granted after GeeWizz funded a power wheelchair to replace his manual one. His mum Laura said: “The new wheelchair has been lifechanging for George – giving him the independence that every child should have. “He loves it so much, he’s never been able to leave my side before, and now he’s got this chair he goes way ahead. “We have been around the park and on lovely long walks and he’s having a great time. “Before, he had a manual lightweight wheelchair, but his arms tired very quickly and he was unable to explore the world around him.”

George and his family were supported from the money raised for GeeWizz by the 2015 Sir Bobby’s Online Auction, now named the Ultimate Charity Auction.

Luke Cattermole

Luke Cattermole has Cerebral Palsy and Epilepsy – meaning he is unable to walk or talk and do so many of the things that 12-year-olds would take for granted. GeeWizz has supported Luke with a much needed portable hoist, sensory garden items and an away day at Colchester Zoo for the whole family.

Thanks to GeeWizz, Luke is now able to play in the garden with his three brothers, Kyle (aged 6), Aidan (aged 3) and Finley James (aged 10 months), and the hoist has allowed the family to contemplate their first holiday in years. Mum Kirsty said: “GeeWizz has given us so many new opportunities. The hoist allows us to lift Luke in and out of chairs so we can think about going on holiday. “Meanwhile, he will absolutely love the outdoor chimes and sensory garden items. He is unable to do things like go on a slide but they will give Luke the chance to play with his brothers in the garden. It is such a simple thing that adds so much to Luke’s quality of life.”

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Luke was also supported by a special exhibition showcasing the work of renowned Bury St Edmunds photographer Tom Murray. GeeWizz was chosen as the beneficiary of the evening, jointly hosted by Andrew and Gemma Speed and their companies St Edmundsbury Financial Services Ltd, Sheridans, 3SQ and Larksbridge. A fundraiser was also organised by Pascal and Karine Canevet, owners of Maison Bleue in Bury St Edmunds, to commemorate the Queen’s 90th birthday. SEH Builders kindly installed all the garden sensory equipment.

Dane Jackson

Dane has Multiple Sclerosis, a neurological condition, and he lives alone, unaided. Dane Jackson has paid tribute to the support he has received from GeeWizz, saying the charity has made a “massive” difference to his quality of life. Dane was living in a flat with no flooring while he was struggling to afford simple things that eased his condition.

But that all changed once GeeWizz got on board, helping to improve his standard of living, in and out of the home, by working closely with other organisations. Dane said: “Gina and her charity GeeWizz have helped me massively. For a long time I lived in a flat with no flooring, which meant there was a lot of dust and I was worried about falling over. “When GeeWizz arranged for me to have some flooring put down, it was absolutely fantastic. It has made such a difference to my home life.”

In addition to the flooring, GeeWizz worked with Nicky Mayhew and Ipswich Borough Council to give Dane a swimming pass at Crown Pools, as well as working with Sally Webb and the team at Ipswich Town FC, who supply matchday tickets. Dane added: “GeeWizz has really improved my quality of life and given me something to look forward to.”

Andrew and Mick Fulcher

Brothers Andrew, affectionately known as Sprock, and Mick Fulcher suffer from Duchenne’s Muscular Dystrophy – a severe muscle-wasting condition. The pair heavily rely on their laptops to interact with the world, but it was becoming increasingly hard for Sprock and Mick to hold their devices.

GeeWizz helped get eye-gazers funded for the brothers, which allow them to operate their computers using an eye-operated communication and control system. Delighted mum Lynn Fulcher said: “Michael had not been able to go on his laptop for a year as he couldn’t work it with his hands while Sprock, had to be propped up in bed with pillows and towels under his arms and elbows.

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“Thanks to Gina and GeeWizz their quality of life has dramatically improved. “They can now use their computers again to go on Facebook, email people and start interacting with the world again. “They are so good on their computers and I have noticed a difference in their happiness and general wellbeing since they have been able to use them again. “I cannot thank GeeWizz enough. I thought it would be years before I could afford these eye-gazers – my heart sank. GeeWizz has made such a difference to their lives.” GeeWizz also arranged for the brothers to see their beloved Arsenal at a match at the Emirates Stadium last season.