“When they told me Mikayla was deaf, I felt as though the ground had been ripped out from under me. I’m a single mum, I don’t have a big family network and was recently diagnosed with Multiple Sclerosis. I was in complete shock, with no idea how I was going to cope.”
– Sonia, Mikayla’s mum
Sonia was devastated when Mikayla failed her routine hearing test in hospital. She tried to convince herself everything would be ok – but Sonia knew instinctively there was something wrong with Mikayla’s hearing. Sadly, Sonia and Mikayla were forced to wait 12 months in the public health system for an appointment with an Ear Nose and Throat specialist, and clarity on Mikayla’s condition. In the meantime, Sonia had no choice but to watch on helplessly as her newborn daughter suffered constant illness – difficulties feeding and sleeping, balance problems, dizziness and countless painful middle ear infections.
Sometimes Sonia’s MS flares and it takes a terrible toll – there are times when she loses the ability to move freely or to think clearly. But through it all, Sonia strives to ensure Mikayla’s needs come first. And for both Sonia and Mikayla, early intervention therapy sessions to support Mikayla’s hearing and speech development – as well as her social skills, confidence and preparedness for school – are an absolutely critical part of their lives each week.
“I hope you understand the impact your support has on families like us. I’m a single mum. I struggle. Without your support, without The Shepherd Centre, my daughter would not have turned into the beautiful child she is today. I’ll be forever grateful for all you’ve given us.”
No matter who they are, no matter where they live, no matter their family situation
– EVERY child, just like Mikayla, deserves the chance to hear and speak.