Topics:  america, goldenhar syndrome, health, lucy day, sunshine coast

Hear, hear for Lucy

Lucy Day is bound for the US for surgery after community support raised the money for her trip.
Lucy Day is bound for the US for surgery after community support raised the money for her trip. Nicola Brander

LUCY Day is bound for the United States of America and has 60,000 reasons to be excited about it.

The two-year-old from Battery Hill has raised the $60,000 she needs to get to America for surgery on September 18.

Lucy was born with Goldenhar syndrome, a rare condition that affects about one in every 10,000 births.

She relies on a bone conductor hearing aid as her left ear is essentially deaf and her right ear has a narrow canal.

Even though her right ear potentially can hear well, due to wax build-up and persistent glue ear, her hearing is at 20-30%.

In December, Lucy's mum, Michelle Ridoutt, launched the Listening for

Lucy appeal and has been overwhelmed by the support of her local community.

"We've done really well. It's really exciting. I'm still in shock," she said.

"I did not think we'd raise that much in a short amount of time.

"Caloundra's an amazing community. They really pulled together and got behind Lucy. We've got airfares booked; surgery paid for; we're waiting on a list of all the appointments, so we can book some accommodation."

Lucy's friend Frankee-Lee Shaw, of Noosa, is heading for the same surgery.

Fortunately Lucy is able to get both ears operated on at the same time, whereas Frankee requires two operations and two trips to America.

Frankee-Lee has raised about $40,000, shy of the $100,000 needed to cover both operations.

"Both girls are having their operations on the same day and will go over together," Ms Ridoutt said.

Ms Ridoutt said Lucy was looking forward to being able to hear properly.

"We've talked to her a bit. She knows the money is going to fix her ears, as much as a nearly-three-year-old can understand," she said.

On June 16, the Shadforth's Century Charity Ride, a 110km bike ride from Tanawha to Noosa Heads will raise even more money for the two girls. The ride organisers have raised more than $15,000 and aim to raise $50,000.

Ms Ridoutt said most of the proceeds would go to Frankee-Lee and any money raised above the required amount for both girls would go to the Sunshine Coast Hear and Say Centre.



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