A seven year old girl, who was born with a rare liver disease and was given a life-saving transplant when she was just six months old, has raised £1,947 for Children’s Liver Disease Foundation (CLDF) by climbing Tinto.
Erin McIlvaney from Biggar was born with the life-threatening disease, biliary atresia. CLDF provided her parents with information on her condition when she was diagnosed and have been on hand with support for the family ever since.
“CLDF are involved in every aspect of living with a childhood liver disease and organ transplant,” explains Erin’s mum, Kirstin. “From providing essential educational material to hosting family fun weekends where our kids make lifelong friendships, they are the only charity who work in this area and so many families benefit from their work.
“We would be lost without their support on our journey with liver disease and through them we have met others on similar paths, many of whom have become our closest supporters.
“Erin hasn’t had a smooth journey with her health recently, with lots of new tests involving trips to theatre, new medications and other challenges to face. She finds courage to cope from knowing she is not alone and that other children understand what she goes through.”
Despite her battles with her health, Erin was determined to join in with Big Yellow Friday, the charity’s annual fundraising day, and decided that climbing the 2333 foot high Tinto would be her challenge.
“Erin was amazing and made it to the summit in one and a half hours,” says Kirstin. “We had a pit stop at the top and were back down again in 45 minutes. It was a huge challenge for her but we had lots of friends with us to help keep her going. As is customary we took two stones to leave at the summit as a token of our achievement. Erin had decorated them herself and was very proud to leave them there. It’s been a great fundraiser too. We are confident that when all her sponsorship money is in she will have raised £2,000!”
Alison Taylor, Chief Executive of Children’s Liver Disease Foundation commented: “CLDF is the only UK charity dedicated to fighting all childhood liver diseases, by providing information and emotional support, funds for research and a voice for all those affected. In order to do this however, we rely almost entirely on voluntary donations so we are delighted to hear about Erin’s achievement in climbing Tinto and grateful for the huge effort she put into it. This is a fantastic achievement and she should be very proud of herself.”
You can still support Erin’s Tinto climb by going to her JustGiving page.