Wiltshire Publications

Westbury mum continues to grant magical wishes for children

This entry was posted on Tuesday, August 1st, 2017 at 4:25 pm.

Jen McElhone and Jenny Couldrake

A CHARITY which is run by a Westbury mum, for six years has been helping grant wishes for sick children in Wiltshire as well as fundraising for local causes.

Jenny Couldrake set up Wiltshire Wishes in 2010 after being inspired  by a local campaign, Connor’s Dream Appeal.

Jen got in touch with Connor’s mum, Jen McElhone, to ask how she could help with the appeal and organised two events which enabled him to have one of his wishes come true. Jen was then inspired to help more children like Connor have their wishes granted.

Jenny said, “I realised that I wanted to do more to help children like Connor so I set up Wiltshire Wishes and Jen joined me and now helps me.

“We have granted 15 wishes in the last six years including a puppy, a trip to Horse World in a limo with friends, a gift of an iPad, a visit from Father Christmas with a special toy  and a trip to a fire station.

“As well as granting  wishes, we have also helped families with their  fundraising. We’ve supported Nicole’s Goal, Alexander Vinson and we have also helped fundraise to help pay for a child’s headstone. We are currently helping a little boy from Trowbridge, Jack who has Duchenne’s Muscular Dystrophy – a progressive muscle wasting condition; the treatment is limited and there is unfortunately no cure. All his family want to do is give him a safe home to live in. So, we are fundraising to help pay for an extension to be built.

“We are asking people to pledge £5 for 10 bricks for ‘Jacks House’ people can do this by visiting  www.gofund me.com/buybrick4jackshouse. For every £5 donated, you will be added into a draw to win £250 and the lucky winner will be announced once all bricks have been sold.

We are also helping Dolly Hughes from Dilton Marsh whose family are trying to raise money to pay for an extension.  Dolly has Congenital Central Hypoventilation Syndrome – a disorder of the autonomic nervous system which affects her breathing. It causes a person to hyperventilate, especially during sleep, resulting in a shortage of oxygen so she has to be on ventilation throughout the night. The extension will allow the family to have a care worker visit and give rest bite to her parents who currently have to sit with her whilst she sleeps.

“As well as all the fundraising we are currently busy with, we also have a few magical wishes for other children which we are working on.

“It’s lovely to help the local children. Even if it’s just a little something to help put a smile on their faces especially with what they are going through.  o

“A lot of the children that we have granted wishes for we have become really good friends with them and their family and we still keep in touch. It’s been lovely to see some of them grow up and reach secondary school.

“As a charity we are not funded; we are just couple of mums fundraising and everything is totally voluntary. We are not registered either so we do find it hard to get help; however we do receive support from West Wiltshire Crematorium in Semington throughout the year and without this support we wouldn’t be able to grant the wishes. It’s great to have such a big company helping such a small group.

“Wiltshire Wishes has been such a big part of my life and I really do enjoy giving something back.

“My children have been a big part of it too. They constantly help me with events and come along to meetings – I wouldn’t be able to do it without them.”