STROLLER DONATED: Christine Fleming (rear left) with Lions Jan Davis and Leon Horan. In front are Baby Bella co-proprietor Jaime Bates (left), Chloe Fleming and Lion s member John Perkins.
STROLLER DONATED: Christine Fleming (rear left) with Lions Jan Davis and Leon Horan. In front are Baby Bella co-proprietor Jaime Bates (left), Chloe Fleming and Lion s member John Perkins. Richard Forbes

Bureaucrats snub a family in need

THE Lismore Lions Club has presented a 'special needs' stroller to a family for its severely disabled daughter.

Weighing just 980gm when she was born 13 weeks premature, Chloe Fleming has a rare chromosome disorder that has left her with muscle weakness and uncoordinated movements.

Chloe, now 7, is developmentally delayed, has cerebral palsy and experiences seizures.

Her mother Christine said she had always needed to be there for Chloe, but a combined income was necessary to pay for medications and equipment.

“But eventually I had to leave work to care for Chloe full-time,” Mrs Fleming said.

“My husband Richard started taking on extra hours to help make up the shortfall. But now he's gone for around 15 hours a day. It seems he's never really home.

“I'd dearly love him to have an eight-hour day, so we can have a level of normality in our relationship, but that won't happen while we can't get any government funding.

“There are major stresses attached to having a severely disabled child.

“We've applied for State Government assistance under the Program of Appliances for Disabled People, but nothing happened.

“We approached the Department of Aging, Disability and Home Care two years ago and we're still waiting.”

Frustrated, the Flemings approached Lismore Lions, which on Tuesday provided Chloe with a car seat and a Maclaren Major Buggy, which is specifically designed for special needs children.

Lions president Jan Davis said she was happy Lions could help.

“This is a single-income family that genuinely needs help,” Mrs Davis said.

“We spoke to the proprietors of Baby Bella in Lismore and we reached an agreement where the family can have the car seat and the stroller.”

Grateful for the support from the Lions, Mrs Fleming is hoping to join the organisation 'so I can give back by hopefully helping someone else'.



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