Media/Two million reasons to smile for Western Sydney pre-schooler with cerebral palsy

Two million reasons to smile for Western Sydney pre-schooler with cerebral palsy

Little Pippa’s smile and even bigger heart inspires $2.5 million in donations from around the world

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Two million reasons to smile for Western Sydney pre-schooler with cerebral palsy
 
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DEAN PARK, MONDAY 15 SEPTEMBER 2014 – Little Pippa may only be four years old, but she is already proving to have international star quality!

The Dean Park girl has cerebral palsy and is the face of the Aussie-inspired STEPtember campaign where participants each do 10,000 steps a day throughout September and raise money to provide vital therapy, equipment and research into cerebral palsy.

With Pippa’s help, the home-grown STEPtember campaign has expanded across the United States, Canada, the UK, The Netherlands and Turkey. With the STEPtember challenge not even half-way through, donations totalling close to $2.5 million have already poured in from across the globe.

Pippa’s mum Jo says she couldn’t be more proud of her little girl, whose determination and positive outlook on life are infectious.

‘Pippa and her twin sister were born nine weeks early’, Jo said. ‘When Pippa was seven days old she was placed on life support and we were told she may not recover. That’s when we discovered Pippa’s fighting spirit, as she turned the corner and we brought her home two months later.

‘Pippa was later diagnosed with cerebral palsy and has undergone regular therapy to enable to her to walk using a frame and interact with her sister and pre-school friends. Despite the daily challenges she faces, you hardly ever see her without that gorgeous smile.’

Pippa’s smiling face has been shared around the world for the STEPtember campaign, inspiring en-masse global registrations and donations. She’s also having a massive impact closer to home, with the entire teaching staff of Oakville Preschool, where she attends, signing up to the challenge.

‘I saw an advertisement online for STEPtember and realised the gorgeous little girl smiling at me was our own Pippa’, says pre-school teacher Melissa Malcolm. ‘We see how much effort and determination Pippa puts into living life to the fullest, so we didn’t hesitate to register for STEPtember and put our own physical stamina to the test. Every single staff member is taking part – we’ll certainly be the fittest pre-school in Sydney by the end of September!’

STEPtember participants form teams of four and each aim to do 10,000 steps a day from 3-30 September. Participants also raise money to help Cerebral Palsy Alliance provide vital therapy, research and equipment.    To support Pippa’s STEPtember team, go to www.steptember.org.au

Released on 15 Sep 2014