Mother Melissa Hammel’s dream of building a customised special-needs home for her family and young daughter with a disability is coming true.
It's all thanks to the donations and discounts from local businesses with more than 30 commercial enterprises, which supported her project by donating around $60,000 of goods and services.
Items given to the mother included video monitors, water tanks, air-conditioning, tiles, plastering, paint, Caesar stone bench-tops, white goods and the list goes on.
Modifications to the Gold Coast house will include a wet room style bathroom to assist in showering, video monitors to watch for Chelsea’s seizures, a wheelchair friendly environment and a sound proof bedroom.
It has been an uphill battle for Melissa and husband Trent to get ahead to build a home while paying the expensive medical costs necessary for their three-year-old daughter Chelsea who suffers multiple disabilities.
“We will be forever grateful to these generous businesses who have allowed us to build Chelsea’s special home,” she said.
“The donations and discounts were overwhelming and we are in awe that it is really happening.
“The generosity of so many companies who supported my family is inspirational.”
The funding came in generously after Melissa contacted all the suppliers of her builder requesting assistance.
Melissa and Chelsea’s journey has not been easy but it was the steps taken along the way.
Melissa jumped on board Horizon Foundation’s Baby Bridges early intervention program, which provided her with much-needed respite and valuable information sessions with leading health specialists, as well as a valuable support network and access to resources within the wider community.
“It is a daunting new world when you discover there is something wrong with your child,” she said.
“Chelsea started having seizures and was diagnosed with Aicardi Syndrome, Cortical dysplasia, Epilepsy and Cerebral Palsy.
“We were in hospital for five weeks trying to manage her seizures and I never left her bedside.
“Chelsea cannot talk, crawl or walk and she is developmentally delayed.
“Baby Bridges is an unbelievably important program for families to know they can access specialists in the wider community for free and to meet other like-minded people who are travelling the same journey.”
The program gave Melissa the opportunity to meet other mothers in similar circumstances.
“A network is vital to your general sanity, your child’s health and wellbeing, to improving family life and to access what is available in terms of funding and resources,” she said.
“It is nice to have Chelsea interacting with other children, and for everyone at Baby Bridges it’s these little milestones we share that all the mothers have in common and appreciate.”
This determined mum says she has plenty of fire in the belly to fight for Chelsea’s future.
“The best advocate for your child is you. It is important that you surround yourself with other positive people and to maximise the support for your family.”
If you would like to donate or follow Chelsea’s Journey visit her website www.chanceforchelsea.com
The house will be completed early next year.