A MOTHER who almost burst into tears with pride after watching her autistic daughter ride a specially adapted trike in front of cheering crowds is appealing for the community to help her cycle again.
Ten-year-old Keira Baggaley took part in one of the children’s races to celebrate the Barrow leg of the Pearl Izumi Tour Series, riding a trike belonging to her school, Sandside Lodge in Ulverston.
Keira’s mother Melanie was overwhelmed with emotion when watching her daughter, who relies on a gastrostomy feeding tube, ride on Friday as she has not been able to use standard bicycles.
Mrs Baggaley, 45, of Green Lane, Dalton, is now urging people to help her fundraise so her daughter can have a trike of her own.
She said: “When I saw her riding the trike I thought it was amazing. It was incredible to see her riding a bike so confidently and easily.
“I wanted to cry because we have bought Keira bikes with stabilisers before but she doesn’t want to go on them. She doesn’t feel safe.
“She would benefit enormously by having a trike like this at home.”
A specially-adapted trike of her own would set Keira’s family back around £500 and Mrs Baggaley has contacted Harrison’s Fun Fund to see if it can help.
The fund was set up following the successful appeal to replace a stolen trike in 2012 belonging to Harrison Holmes, a young boy from Barrow with cerebral palsy.
The charity has provided sensory equipment to disabled children across Furness thanks to generous donations from the public and fundraising.
Mrs Baggaley, who works as a dinnerlady at Sandside Lodge, said: “Keira became so thin and withdrawn last year, spending a lot of time in hospital, but having a special needs trike would benefit her hugely.
“She lost all of the strength in her muscles. The trike would help build her up.”
The specially-adapted tricycle Keira can play with at school is more suitable to her needs due to its balance technology, wider tyres and low centre of gravity.
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