Supporting a student with over £120k donated to Whizz-Kidz

The Barratt Developments Yorkshire East division has donated £126,000 to the UK’s leading charity for young wheelchair users, Whizz-Kidz, which has specifically funded wheelchairs and mobility equipment. Whizz-Kidz is dedicated to transforming the lives of disabled children by providing life-changing mobility equipment.

The donation will continue to make an incredible difference to young wheelchair users across the local region, including to that of Caitlin, who lives near to Barratt Developments’ Yorkshire East’s Head Office in York.

19-year-old Caitlin Parsons, a young wheelchair user from York, suffers with severe hypermobility syndrome, postural orthostatic tachycardia syndrome (PoTS), chronic fatigue, Ehlers Danlos Syndrome (EDS) and dislocations. Her declining health has resulted in her needing to use her wheelchair more and more. With the help of support from Barratt Developments’ Yorkshire East since the start of the pandemic, totalling to over £169,000, Caitlin received a power assist, called a Smoov, from Whizz-Kidz to attach to her manual wheelchair, which provides an extra boost of power when she needs it. This meant that she could use her energy socialising and focusing on university lectures, instead of getting around. The Smoov has given Caitlin more confidence and has enabled her to live an independent life at university, where she recently achieved a first class honours degree.

Caitlin commented: “I can’t push for long periods of time as I get fatigued quite quickly and can’t go uphill, so I always needed someone to push me. Before I got my equipment, my family had to help me a lot and they wouldn’t feel comfortable leaving me on my own because I couldn’t get around and do things. That was quite difficult as I was 17/18 years old and wanted to live my life and not rely on my parents. With my new equipment, even with my declining health, I still feel independent. Now I’m at university on my own!”

Daniel Smith, Managing Director at Barratt Developments’ Yorkshire east, added: “Whizz-Kidz does a truly fantastic job supporting young wheelchair users, and it was an honour to be able to give them this much-deserved donation. We hope that our donation will help to raise awareness of the vital work that the charity does, and help it to continue supporting young wheelchair users across the country.”

Jennie Chmura, Corporate Accounts Manager at Whizz-Kidz, said: “Barratt Developments’ generous donation has made an incredible difference to young wheelchair users. We’d like to extend a huge thank you to everyone at Barratt Developments” Yorkshire East for their dedication to improving the lives of young wheelchair users. None of this would have been possible without their efforts.”