A Dorset mother of seven will be skydiving from 13,000 feet this weekend to raise money for Julia's House, who support her seriously ill daughter.
Alex Pugh from Burton takes on the exhilarating challenge for Julia's House and hopes to raise £800 from her fundraising in recognition of the support we have provided to her family and many others like them across Dorset and Wiltshire. In addition, she would like to raise the same amount to help Linwood School replace their hydrotherapy pool and create a new changing room facility and sensory room.
Alex's twelve-year-old daughter Tamzin, who attends Linwood School, has received care from Julia's House for the last seven years, after being born with an undiagnosed but life-limiting condition which affects her in number of ways including seizures and severe visual impairment.
"I'm absolutely scared stiff!" admits Alex. "I hate heights, but when my boys asked me what I wanted for my fiftieth birthday I went straight to my bucket list and asked to jump out of aeroplane! I've never done anything like this before, but it's something I've always wanted to do. It's one of those once in a lifetime things that you have to do. I was all prepared to do the jump in April but it got cancelled due to the weather and I've had to wait until now. The last time I even set foot on an aeroplane was 29 years ago!"
Her husband and family will be there to support Alex as she faces her fears this Saturday at the Army Parachute Association airfield near Salisbury. Julia's House will be on hand too, to provide sibling support to Tamzin's brothers as they watch their mum take on her high-flying challenge.
Alex explains: "Tamzin is such a happy girl. She can't talk - although her eyebrows tell you if she's in a mood with you. She gives you the look! She can sit, but only for a few minutes, and you have to be ready to catch her. She can't walk and is fed through her stomach - I cathetorise her through her belly button every three hours. I have six boys and Tamzin is my only girl - she's my little princess!
“When the Julia's House nurses and carers come it gives me time to be with my boys and be a mum to them. A lot of my time is taken up with Tamzin, so it's such a help to just be able to sit and do homework or play with them, or even to jump in the bath and have some time alone for me. I don't really know what 'me time' is anymore."