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Youngster inspires new children’s book

Five-year-old Molly Birch with her mother and author Emma Birch, left, at the book launch.

Five-year-old Molly Birch with her mother and author Emma Birch, left, at the book launch.

A Ripon youngster with cerebral palsy is the inspiration behind a new book written by her mother and published by charity Scope.

Emma Birch, along with occupational therapist Michelle Rundle, has penned Haylee’s Friends, which takes direct inspiration from Emma’s daughter, Molly, five, and was officially launched at Booths Cafe on Marshall Way.

The book aims to help children better understand cerebral palsy, which affects about one in every 400 children and affects muscle control and movement. In Molly’s case, it leaves her needing a walker to help her get around.

The idea for the book came from Emma who found that she and her husband Kevin were finding it increasingly difficult to answer Molly’s questions about why she needs equipment to do the same things as her parents and non- disabled friends.

Emma said: “We tried our best to explain about cerebral palsy and answer all the questions she had. But it was really difficult to put it into language that Molly could understand.

“I contacted Scope to see if it had any story books to help Molly understand.

“As our conversations went on I asked if the charity would help me write a book to answer these questions and 
it agreed to help us with designing it and the illustrations.”

The book is already in primary schools in the Harrogate district and is appearing in children’s centres, child development centres and libraries.

If you would like a copy of Haylee’s Friends, telephone 02920 815 452 or email training@scope.org.uk. You can also buy it as an ebook at www.amazon.co.uk

 

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