Noah’s Ark’s community of supporters really came together this summer when a local mum needed help getting her flat in shape for her daughter’s homecoming from hospital.
Eighteen-month old Mira had spent her whole life in hospital. Born with a rare genetic disorder that affects her lungs, she wasn’t expected to survive, “She was a hopeless case, for about eight or nine months, and then everything changed”, says her mum Eman. “She’ just a miracle! She’s ventilated and sometimes she needs oxygen, but she’s so much better.”
This summer Eman was told Mira could finally go home. There was just one problem, while Mira was in hospital Eman had been by her side, leaving her flat unoccupied. The flat needed extensive repairs and redecoration to prevent risk of infection, plus there were access issues – and Mira was unable to be discharged from the hospital until these had been fixed.
Eman has not worked since Mira was born and as the homeowner, couldn’t afford, or manage, to do all the improvements needed. A team of Noah’s Ark volunteers started work, but it became clear that the complexity of the job required a professional team.
Priya Singh, Noah’s Ark Senior Community Engagement Manager, worked with colleagues to find a solution. Supporters including Golders Green Rotary Club and the local branch of Sainbury’s put the word around and decorating company RG Group stepped in to do the job at no charge.
“I knew I needed to make a lot of changes, to the flat,” says Eman. “I couldn’t have done it without the team put together by Noah’s Ark, who have helped me with everything. It looks perfect – they did a great job, they even paid for the paint!”.
In addition, “Mira has a lot of equipment so it’s hard for me to take her out, but I have a very big balcony – so I wanted to make a garden playground for her there. A volunteer came and put down artificial grass for me, he was brilliant!”
Mira has been home from hospital for a month now and is really flourishing. She’s receiving visits from Noah’s Ark Specialist Carer Paula, who according to Eman is “amazing with Mira.”
“Mira’s been stuck in the hospital for a long time, but now she loves to go out, she doesn’t cry. It’s important for Mira to get out of the house and spend time with other children too, such as at Sports Day. It was so good for her to see the other kids running around and playing.”
If you think you could help a family like Mira’s by volunteering your DIY skills, find out more here.