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Five to trek Everest to help young girl walk

Five intrepid adventurers will set out on a gruelling sponsorship challenge to make six year old, Brooke Lawrance’s dream of walking come true. Sponsorship channels are now open.


Bexhill on Sea, East Sussex, 22nd October 2012:  Five intrepid adventurers, including the former Great Britain rugby league legend, Bobbie Goulding, are taking on the challenge of a lifetime in March 2013 to help Brooke Lawrance’s dream of walking come true.   
When friends Mark Hughes and Terry Harding heard about Brooke’s plight they wanted to find a challenge that would capture people’s attention to encourage the maximum sponsorship for this worthy cause in aid of Brooke’s Wish To Walk appeal.
Six year old Brooke, from Ipswich, was diagnosed with cerebral palsy as a baby and has been confined to a wheelchair ever since. Not only does she have to deal with the fact that she can’t walk; she has to deal with pain on a daily basis.
Sarah Lawrance, Brooke’s mum said: “It really breaks my heart when Brooke is left behind crying while all her sisters, brothers and friends are running ahead or playing on playground equipment and Brooke just has to sit and watch.”
Now Brooke has been accepted to undergo a life changing operation called Selective Dorsal Rhizotomy (SDR) at the St Louis Children’s Hospital in Missouri, USA. It’s a special operation for children with spasticity cerebral palsy. It has a reported 100% success rate in its 24 year history but it is only currently available in the USA and more recently in Bristol. However this operation is not available on the NHS. The Tree of Hope charity in Bexhill on Sea have been supporting and helping with Brooke’s Wish To Walk campaign.Jeremy Marris
Jeremy Marris, spokesman for the Tree of Hope said: “The Tree of Hope offers hope to the families of sick children in the UK, like Brooke, who need specialist medical surgery, treatment, therapy and equipment in order to free them from suffering, giving a better quality to their young lives. Fund raising challenges and sponsorships provide vital funding to the charity and allow us to support an increasing number of children across the UK.”
Mark Hughes and Terry Harding both agreed that a trek to Everest Base Camp had the impact and the difficultly factor to be noticed. After a long discussion with Brooke’s Mum, Sarah and the Tree of Hope it was agreed that #TeamBrooke would be formed to complete this trek.
Mark Hughes said: “We want to raise £100,000 for Brooke and the Tree of Hope charity. We’re aiming to be able to pay for Brooke’s treatment and physiotherapy for three years following her operation as well as help other children via Tree of Hope.”
Friend Terry Harding added: “With temperatures reaching below -15c and 14 hard days of trekking to altitudes 5,400 metres above sea level, it’s not going to be easy. But why should it? We did not take on this challenge lightly and are committed to making the trip and completing the goal.”
Mark & Terry have used Online and Social Media channels to spread the word of their challenge including building their own website – and then setting up a Twitter account @Climb4Brooke and a Facebook page assisted by the Tree of Hope.
Within days of using Twitter to share their message, 3 new members came forward to join the team, Amy, Sam and the rugby league legend, Bobbie Goulding. Mark said: “Each member lives in a different part of the UK.  We are all in training now and we regularly contact each other to update, discuss and plan the next step. Each member is giving their time and money to make this happen and raise the £100,000 for the cause.”
An official Just Giving Page for donations has been launched for sponsorship donations to be received with immediate effect. A spokesperson for the Tree of Hope charity summed it up: “All the money raised will be used for the treatment and aftercare Brooke requires and other children via the Tree of Hope. No money from the funds raised will be used to support the cost of the Trek, this is being raised personally by the team. As a charity we encourage people to get behind #TeamBrooke and donate whatever they can.”

-       ENDS

Notes For Editors

Tree of Hope:

  • The Tree of Hope charity operates with the main aim of offering “hope” to the families of sick children in the UK.  It helps families of children who need specialist medical surgery, treatment and therapy in order to stop them suffering.
  • The Tree of Hope is a registered charity in England and Wales No. 1043092 and a registered charity in Scotland No. SC04261.
  • The Tree of Hope charity is endorsed by the Fundraising Standards Board and the Institute of Fundraising.
  • The Tree of Hope charity relies on donations, both monetary and material, from businesses and individuals. The money raised from sponsorship of the Everest trek will be used for the treatment and aftercare Brooke requires and other children via the Tree of Hope.

#TeamBrooke :

  • Founded by Mark Hughes and Terry Harding to raise funds for Brooke’s Wish To Walk appeal and Tree of Hope charity
  • Team members are Mark Hughes, Terry Harding, Bobbie Goulding, Sam and Amy
  • The Trek to Everest will happen in March 2013

Research Links# TeamBrooke:                 

Just Giving Sponsorship page:

Brooke Lawrance:             

Brooke’s Wish To Walk:   

Tree of Hope:                   


 Brooke Lawrance
 Tree of Hope
 Trek to Everest
 Mark Hughes
 Terry Harding

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