Paulsgrove teenager features in McCain TV advert raising awareness of rare incurable condition and sharing importance of family
A TEENAGER is jumping for joy after being able to raise awareness of her rare genetic condition by appearing in a TV advert campaign.
Paulsgrove youngster Maddison Crockford Reid, known as Maddi, was over the moon that she was chosen to feature in Teatime Tales.
The animated series of adverts is about families who have been helped by disability charity Family Fund.
The 13-year-old, who has rare life-limiting condition Sanfilippo syndrome, was given a brand-new trampoline by the charity.
This helps with body movements as her condition has caused problems with her hips and legs.
Maddi’s mum Shelly Reid said: ‘Getting the trampoline with Family Fund was like a lifeline for us.
‘Family Fund has been a saviour – they have come in right when we needed them and have helped bring so much joy to Maddi’s life, helping her to be the life and soul of the party that she’s always been.
‘The trampoline has not only massively helped her confidence but is also crucial to helping with her physiotherapy, Maddi couldn’t live without it now.’
The trampoline has been used by the family in so many ways, including eating dinner together on it when Maddi’s sister came to visit.
Shelly was introduced to Family Fund by a friend, and was given the equipment as part of the charity’s campaign to provide families with essential items to help their day-to-day lives.
Maddi was diagnosed with Sanfilippo syndrome in August 2015, meaning she will eventually lose the ability to walk, talk, see and hear.
Most children with the condition don’t live past their teenage years, and Maddi is beginning to lose her speech.
Shelly said: ‘As you can imagine, (the diagnosis) turned our life upside down. I do feel like we’re on borrowed time, but she’s doing really well.
‘She’s a very nurturing little girl and loves to look after the babies. Everyone’s her best friend and the sun is always shining.’
The pandemic hit the family particularly hard as they spent months shielding and being unable to leave their home, and Shelly sadly lost her dad.
Shelly said: ‘Losing dad early in this pandemic has really hit home to me how important family is.’
Maddi’s advert, made in partnership with McCain and aired on Sky Media, is narrated by children’s author David Walliams who recounts Maddi’s favourite pastimes.
These include doing her own backflips on the new trampoline, as well as using Makaton to ask for her favourite meal of sausage and chips.
Shelly said: ‘We saw it for the first time last Saturday, Maddi thought it was hysterical. Every step of the way it’s been really exciting, it was good fun.
‘The fact that we have got Sanfilippo syndrome out on prime time TV is great, it’s so rare and we don’t get enough publicity. There’s still no government support into looking for a cure.’