March mum’s thanks to charity

Jo Polley (left) with 3 year old Ashton and Louise Garner of Ormiston Children and Families Trust. ANL-141216-120846009
Jo Polley (left) with 3 year old Ashton and Louise Garner of Ormiston Children and Families Trust. ANL-141216-120846009

A mother is raising money for a charity to say ‘thank you’ for the help given to her son.

Jo Polley says Ormiston has helped her three-year-old son Ashton take huge steps forward after helping to diagnose his special needs.

Now Mrs Polley and her friend Charlie Burbridge, who is also receiving support from the charity, are running a raffle on Facebook along with other fundraisers.

Mrs Polley is also hoping to raise awareness of the charity which has helped to change her life since a chance encounter in a pub.

She said: “I was tearing my hair out all the time.

“A year ago we went out to Wetherspoons and a lot of people were complaining about Ashton because he was screaming.

“Anna Palmer from Ormiston tapped me on the shoulder and offered me help.

“Without her I really don’t know where we would be as a family. She wasn’t even at work but was kind enough to help.

“A year ago I could not see the light at the end of the tunnel. Something as simple as going to the house from the car was a major battle or going to the supermarket.”

Ashton has been diagnosed with sensory processing disorder, a condition in which the brain has problems processing sensory information, which can have an impact on learning and behaviour.

Mrs Polley, who is married to Steve and has older children, Ryan, 15, and 11-year-old Emmaleigh, said: “It was a bombshell. I wasn’t dealing with a naughty child, he had additional needs.”

The Polleys, who live in March, were provided with a family worker, who provided help and advice.

Ormiston, which is based at the Children’s Centre in Calvary Drive, also helped the family get an early place at All Saints’ Pre-School.

Mrs Polley was also able to attend courses to gain more knowledge to help Ashton.

She said: “He is making huge steps. He took part in the Christmas carol concert and I was so proud as a year ago I don’t think he would be able to cope with such a big thing. He was singing and standing with all the other children. It was a massive milestone.”

Mrs Polley and Mrs Burbridge are running regular raffles on their Facebook page, Fundraising for March and Chatteris Ormiston family charity.

They are appealing for more prizes for the raffle, which will be drawn in January.

The pair are also hoping to hold an auction next year, along with an entertainment evening.

They are hoping to buy toys for the sensory library, which are a tremendous help to families.

Mrs Polley said: “I would like to raise awareness of this fantastic charity.

“They give so much and do amazing work.”

For more information on the charity contact 01354 656581 or email march@ormiston.org