Mums take the plunge for charity
TWO mums with multiple sclerosis (MS) from Portishead are preparing to jump out of a plane to raise money for the centre which has given them hope and a new lease of life.
Liz Ranger and Debbie Futor were diagnosed with the condition in their 30s and their aim is to raise awareness of the disease and raise funds for the MS Therapy Centre in Nailsea.
Liz, aged 32, was diagnosed with MS - a lifelong condition which affects the central nervous system - at the age of 30 after giving birth to her son Sabin.
She suffers from extreme pain, numbness, a lack of movement in her arms, fatigue and has to use a walking stick or wheelchair to get around.
It wasn’t until she discovered the MS Centre that Liz says she was given a new lease of life with the range of treatments available and caring staff who are always there to help.
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She said: “The centre is so important because it’s the only place we can receive all these treatments. It’s fantastic.
“If anything goes wrong I pick up the phone to the centre manager. It gives you companionship and it’s a completely non judgemental, professional place. We use the centre to live a normal life.”
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The MS Therapy Centre offers acupuncture, reflexology, physiotherapy, massage, counselling and oxygen therapy and support.
It costs �350,000 a year to run and the charity is also fund-raising for its new, bigger base which is being built in Bradley Stoke.
Liz said: “Lots of people think of people with MS as being heavily disabled and not able to participate in normal life. We wanted to show there are a lot of us being diagnosed in our 20s-40s. This creates a lot of other social problems as we have young children to raise and mortgages to pay as well as dealing with feeling quite poorly.”
Liz is unable to do many simple tasks we often take for granted such as brushing her hair, using the kettle and driving, and has to have specialist equipment to help her. She has also had to give up her dream of becoming a florist.
She said: “Now I’m just trying to raise my son, raise awareness of MS and raise funds for our charity.
“The future does worry me. I don’t know if I’ll be in a wheelchair next week or in the next decade. It makes me realise the need to seize the moment.”
The mums will be completing their parachute jump on June 25. Anyone interested in sponsoring them can visit www.justgiving.com/liz-ranger