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Sunday, 21 December 2014

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William and Ava are all smiles as they help raise awareness

MAYFIELD pupils are helping to raise the profile of Down’s Syndrome Awareness Week (March 17 to 23).

By Julie Morgan

The youngsters, William Southward, four, and five-year-old Ava Lofthouse, are pictured wearing the “Calm Down, it’s only an extra chromosome” T-shirts to increase acceptance of the condition.

Down’s syndrome is caused by the presence of an extra copy of chromosome 21 in a baby’s cells. It occurs by chance at conception and is irreversible. As yet, no one knows what causes the presence of the extra chromosome.

West Coast Down’s Syndrome Support Group (WCDSSG) is also raising money for Mayfield School’s Development Fund by raffling three seats to CBeebies Live show at Newcastle Metro Arena on April 10.

For a chance to win, put £1 in a sealed envelope with CBeebies, name and contact number, and return to Mayfield School, Whitehaven’s Wellington Bistro or Shooz ‘n’ Sox, Duke Street, before noon tomorrow.

The raffle will then be drawn at Mayfield School’s bingo event which starts tomorrow at 7pm.

Emma Southward is WCDSSG’s founder and secretary and mum to William. She said: “We are delighted at his progress. William has left-sided hemiplegia (a form of cerebral palsy) and Mayfield’s MOVE programme has achieved fantastic results with his mobility and he can now walk and ride a go-kart like any child his age.”

Grant and Emma Lofthouse are Ava’s parents.

They said: “She is learning new words and can count more clearly every week. She is progressing fantastically with her swimming and was recently awarded her first duckling award.”

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