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Leek pupils honour brave youngsters

By Leek Post and Times  |  Posted: February 22, 2014

By Belinda Hargreaves

  • Wearing it Red on Valentine's Day for charity, from the left, Kayla Walters, aged eight, with her mum Gail and five-month-old brother Lucia and four-year-old sister Lemara, Westwood First School's office manager Debbie Potts, Westwood Pre-School supervisor Lynn Carter-Pinto, and Amber Povey with her sons one-year-old Oscar and four-year-old Oliver, and daughter seven-year-old Lily Povey.

  • Pictured above, Wearing it Red on Valentine's Day for charity, from left, Kayla Walters, aged eight, with her mum Gail and five-month-old brother Lucia and four-year-old sister Lemara, Westwood First School's office manager Debbie Potts, Westwood Pre-School supervisor Lynn Carter-Pinto, and Amber Povey with her sons one-year-old Oscar and four-year-old Oliver, and daughter seven-year-old Lily Povey.

  • Wearing it Red on Valentine's Day for charity, from the left, Kayla Walters, aged eight, with her mum Gail and five-month-old brother Lucia and four-year-old sister Lemara, Westwood First School's office manager Debbie Potts, Westwood Pre-School supervisor Lynn Carter-Pinto, and Amber Povey with her sons one-year-old Oscar and four-year-old Oliver, and daughter seven-year-old Lily Povey.

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PUPILS at two Leek schools left their uniforms at home for the day and dressed in red instead in honour of two brave youngsters.

Both Churnet View Middle School and Westwood First School , along with the Westwood Pre-school, hosted a Wear It Red Day on Friday, February 14, to help raise cash in honour of both five-month-old Lucia Walters and one-year-old Oscar Povey.

Both of the boys' families are currently raising cash for the organisations which have helped their sons through a series of medical issues.

Oscar Povey has a rare genetic condition called Charge Syndrome, and had six operations within the first seven weeks of his life.

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The one-year-old, who lives in Leek, is currently wearing a corrective helmet because, due to all of the time he has spent in hospital, he was a severe case of Plagiocephaly, otherwise known as flat head syndrome).

The funds raised on Friday, which at Westwood First School totalled £346, are to be split between Oscar's Giving, which will be donating it to Alder Hey Hospital, and the Heartlink Children's Charity, which is based at Glenfield Hospital in Leicester.

Lucia's mum, Gail Walters, said: "The Heartlink Children's Charity has really supported my son and family. The charity runs the parents' accommodation at the hospital, which really is home from home.

"After being diagnosed as having coarctation of the aorta, Lucia was transferred to Glenfield Hospital in Leicester at two days old where he underwent major heart surgery at just four days old.

"He suffered a stroke then needed further heart surgery at 13 weeks old.

"He's now five months old and is doing well, but faces more surgery on his heart when he is around four or five years old.

"Lucia is doing brilliantly considering what he has been through.

"He's doing everything that a normal five month old does."

Gail, who lives in Leek, is married to 42-year-old Jason. The couple also have two daughters Leyla, aged eight, who attends Westwood First School, and Lemara, aged four, who attends Westwood Pre-School. Gail, aged 29, said: "The girls are brilliant with Lucia. They are both like mother hens around him."

The Wear It Red Day at Churnet View and Westwood First schools took place on the last day of the National CHD – Congenital Heart Defect – Awareness Week. Pupils paid a donation in return for wearing red clothing for the day.

Debbie Potts, office manager at Westwood First School, said: "We were only too happy to support both Gail and Amber when they asked us to do a fund-raising day, which was also to raise awareness about the CHD week."

Oscar's mum, Amber Povey, said: "I think it's brilliant what the schools and the pre-school have done today."

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