A DEVOTED grandma is on a mission to make Disney dreams come true for her granddaughter who doctors once called “the poorliest child in the North West”.
Millie Moran, 4, has a rare form of spina bifida, water on the brain and congenital hyperinsulinism, which causes a damaging form of hypoglycaemia.
She was also born with a three-inch wide gap in her spine so is paralysed from the waist down, and suffers from epilepsy and chronic lung disease.
The brave little girl, who attends Blackshaw Lane Primary School in Royton, lived in hospital for the first two years of her life and has already endured more than 30 operations, with another scheduled for early April.
It was after a three-month spell in hospital at Christmas 2014 when Millie was in a coma battling for her life that grandmother Vicky Shaw promised to take her to Disneyland, Florida.
Vicky, 47 from Springhead, explained: “Millie was so looking forward to Christmas. One minute she was getting excited about opening presents then the next she was on a ventilator.
“Doctors said she was the poorliest child in the North West. But Dr Kanaris and the team at St Mary’s Hospital are fantastic and always do a wonderful job looking after her.
“Millie watches Frozen on Youtube and there is a video of Mariah Carey singing outside Disney – that’s all she watches from January to December! So I promised to take her.
“I have got to do it for her. She has got such a massive personality and it is heart-breaking to see her suffer.”
Now Vicky, who is scheme manager at Lido House in Grotton, is calling on the community to help raise funds for the expensive £10,000 trip for Millie, her mother Emma Clarke, 29, and a nurse.
Millie’s dad Michael Moran, 30 – Vicky’s son – is separated from Emma but is very supportive and helpful.
Vicky said: “I have raised a lot of money for charities at work and the people of Saddleworth are always so generous and helpful. But this is personal, just for Millie, away from work.
“I have got some money in the pot already and received around £500 from our Just Giving Page and another £800 in donations so its adding up slowly.”
To raise more funds, she is organising a ‘Frozen’-themed disco night at George Lawton Hall in Mossley as well as a walk on hot coals at the Beefeater in Rochdale.
She is also looking for donations for a giant bottle tombola, for which she has been buying a bottle each week.
And she said she has been overwhelmed by public support including from Michael Bradshaw from Sporting Image in Lees and Cllr Stephen Hewitt, who set up her Facebook page.
Vicky added: “Millie needs to be intensive care free for 12 months prior to the trip and she has reached that so we are hoping to take her for Christmas if we can raise the money.
“The doctors always have to do lots of tests and operations but at the moment she is the best she has been for a long time.”
Vicky is looking for more fundraising ideas and challenges to take on – nothing including heights or water – and welcomes any ideas or donations. Call Vicky on: 07957 732536.
If you wish to make a direct donation you can to so to a dedicated RBS account 11013598 sort code 16/27/11.