Funding campaign to help young Essex mum suddenly unable to walk

Takely Family Brayden, Harriet, Paul, Amanda

Takely Family Brayden, Harriet, Paul, Amanda - Credit: Celia Bartlett

Friends are rallying round a young mother from Lindsell suddenly unable to walk.

A series of fundraisers are planned to help Amanda Maisey-Young and her family move back into their home.

Husband Paul and their children Brayden, four and Harriet, two, have had to leave their house and move into a bungalow, so Amanda can use a wheelchair.

Amanda, 35, suffered from sudden paralysis in January 2016. She spent six months in hospital and now they have been found a bungalow in Takeley so they can be together.

But, even in the bungalow, the rooms are too small for Amanda to bath the children or put them to bed, the kitchen surfaces are too high for her to cook, she cannot get in or out of the building on her own and husband Paul has become the carer for the family – instead of being able to go back to work as a builder.

Adapting the family home has been estimated at £90,000. They have grants for about half of that and need to raise the rest.

So far, £12,000 has been raised with donations from Dunmow Round Table, crowdfunding, a curry night and cake sales.

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Now the family’s neighbour in Lindsell, Sue Brook and her friend, former Great Dunmow Rotary president, Lesley Buckle-Viner are planning more events. The first will be a series of bingo balls evenings at The Bell in Great Bardfield, starting on Friday, February 24. This is where you win by having the numbers not called out. When a number on your card comes up, you shout: “Balls” and tear up your card. There is also to be an evening with psychic Ronnie Buckingham on March 30 at Dunmow cricket club with all proceeds to the Amanda Maisey-Young fund .

A barbecue and family day is planned for The Bell in June and Sue is now collecting items for an auction of promises.

Sue said: “We want our neighbours home. They are such a lovely family, you couldn’t ask for nicer people. Now the house is empty. Paul used to take such a pride in the garden. We used to chat over the fence and have coffee. It’s so desperately sad.”

Amanda, who has been trying to make the best of it, said: “To be honest, things aren’t great. We’re trying our best, we have two wonderful children and I have a wonderful husband.

“But it is an absolute nightmare. We would like to get back to some kind of normal life where Paul could go back to work and I could look after the children. At the moment, I have never going to be able to bath them or put them to bed again. When I was first discharged from hospital, I was bumping up and down stairs on my bottom, scuttling along the carpet, I got pressure sores and blisters.

“My little boy is really emotionally upset, he talks about going home all the time. We’ve been constantly talking to the school, the GP the health visitor about how to help him.”

Amanda born with Ehlers-Danlos syndrome, a genetic condition that affects connective tissue. She had good days and bad days. She tried to keep fit with physiotherapy, medication and pilates but on January 20 last year, she woke up feeling ill. Within two hours, she had lost the use of her legs. The cause of the deterioration has never been diagnosed. Because she has a gastric pacemaker, she cannot have an MRI scan to see what is going on.

Amanda says it “broke” her to spend so much time in hospital away from her children but now she has accepted her condition and if a cure is found that will be a bonus.

“In hospital, every morning I woke up and thought it might be today I might get better. Then every night, when it hadn’t happened, I was depressed. In the end I thought I can’t think like this. I have to make the best of things.”

To donate to Amanda’s crowdfunding, see:

To help out with auction goods or any other ideas, call Sue Brook on 01371 870109 or email: