Abbotsford family raising funds to help twin girls

Skyla and Jayde have cerebral palsy and need a new van to get them around

  • Mar. 12, 2016 6:00 p.m.

Twin girls Skyla and Jayde have a form of cerebral palsy and are quadriplegic as a result. Their family is trying to raise money to afford a new van to get them around more easily.

Their father says they have smiles that “light up the world.”

And they’ll be smiling even more if they can get the vehicle they need to give them the freedom taken by their limbs that don’t fully function.

Skyla and Jayde’s family is asking the community to donate to their GoFundMe page, so they can buy the $62,000 lift-equipped van they say they desperately need.

The twins, now four, were two years old when they were both diagnosed with spastic quadriplegia, a type of cerebral palsy that affects all four limbs.

The girls’ parents, Alex Robinson and Desiree Gauld, currently have to lift their wheelchairs by hand into their van, a two-person job. Gauld said she is unable to fit the wheelchairs in when she has her stepson with her and doesn’t have her husband’s help.

Desiree worries that her husband, who works in a Surrey steel mill, earning the family’s sole source of income, may not be able to work in the future if he continues so much awkward heavy lifting.

Desiree said that they aren’t able to do all the activities they wish they could, because of this limitation.

“It’s very difficult. Obviously, it’s not ideal but we try and keep on going and try to bring the girls to everything possible.”

Desiree said that while her family has received significant help from the government and charities like Variety, they can’t afford the expensive van.

“We’ve exhausted all other avenues.”

Since its creation on Feb. 19, the fund has raised $5,950, less than 10 per cent of its goal.

Gauld said she is very thankful for the few dozen larger donations so far, but is hopeful that word will spread and a larger number of people make smaller donations. She says that if a few thousand people chose not to buy a coffee one day, and donate to the fund, her family would soon have the van.

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