Community Pride: Courage of Ruth and Georgina Thompson

Community Pride nominees Ruth and Georgina Thompson.

Community Pride nominees Ruth and Georgina Thompson.

First published in News
Last updated

A BRAVE mother and daughter who have faced adversity with courage and strength are the latest inspirational people to be put forward for the Community Pride awards.

Poppleton mum Ruth Thompson and her 10-year-old daughter Georgina have been nominated for the Parent of the Year and Child of the Year awards.

Georgina's nomination has come from family friend Kirsty Ovenden, who has described the daily struggles the little girl, a pupil at Poppleton Ousebank primary school, faces.

Georgina was born with congenital CMV which caused her to have a stroke at birth, attacking her optic nerve and leaving her severely visually impaired, also causing brain damage, learning difficulties and severe epilepsy.

Kirsty said: "This young lady has spent most of her life in hospital, be that for exploratory tests under general anaesthetic, operations, or unfortunately countless times rushed in in an ambulance. Somehow, though she always wears a great big smile!"

Earlier this year Georgina went through major brain surgery to tackle the epilepsy that sometimes left her suffering as many as 20 or 30 seizures a day. The successful operation means she has not has a single seizure since, mum Ruth said, but her recovery has been long and hard fought.

Ruth added: "Every single day presents little struggles, and just getting through the day is enormously challenging for her. Even little things that other children take for granted, like listening to a story, are difficult for her but she does amazingly well.

"If you asked Georgina, she would say she is just the same as everyone else - there's nothing wrong with her - and she just does her best every day."

Since her daughter's birth Ruth has poured her time and energy into making life better for her daughter, and other children facing serious illnesses.

ALong with her family, Ruth founded the Georgina Grace Trust as a way of thanking those who help take of her daughter by helping organisations that work with disabled and additional needs children in Yorkshire.

The charity has raised £15,000 and helped fund new equipment for York Hospital's physiotherapy department.

Ruth has been nominated for the Parent of the Year award by a fellow mum grateful for the hard work she has done to help other families with disabled children in York.

Ruth has also founded York Inspirational Kids - a support group for parents with children with disabilities and additional needs - and organises day trips and events to bring families together.

The nomination added: "Ruth is always on hand with advice and posting help for us parents. She is always supportive and on the end of an email.

"She is the one person we all turn to and she has helped so many of us with help and advice."

Ruth said she was amazed by the nomination and added: "We all tend to think about things for our children, because they go through so much. For someone to recognise me is amazing."

The Community Pride awards are run by The Press and the City of York Council, sponsored by Benenden Health. Nominations will be accepted until 5pm today, Friday, July 18, via thepress.co.uk/pride.

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