A severely disabled Preston schoolgirl who is at the centre of benefits row has had a special wish granted by a charity.
Eight-year-old Ava Jolliffe from Barton, has been given a dog by the Starlight Children’s Foundation
Ava developed Brown-Vialetto-Van Laere syndrome, a rare neurological condition that is characterised by nerve problems, when she was just three.
Sadly the condition is neuro-degenerative and Ava has lost her hearing and speech, is certified blind and is a wheelchair user.
The schoolgirl hit the headlines recently after her parents were told because her dad worked for BAE in Germany and paid the equivalent of National Insurance there they had to pursue a claim for the care component of Disability Living Allowance with the German authorities.
It is understood talks between the two governments are still on going and the family is still waiting for a resolution.
When Ava was referred to Starlight for a wish, she chose have a pet dog of her own and the charity have found her the perfect puppy pal - Little Boo.
Mum, Laura, said: “Ava was born healthy so for her to lose hearing and speech, and to be compromised in vision and mobility was very hard.
“Ava was understandably angry and upset but slowly she is becoming more accepting of her condition.
“Our family revolves around Ava and we just want to make her life as happy, fun and comfortable as possible.”
Ava is passionate about animals and loves her friend’s pug, Harley. Laura said: “The joy Ava feels when she’s around animals is infectious and I believe it would be a wonderful therapeutic experience for her to have a doggie friend of her own.”
Laura added: “The Starlight team, has indeed made Ava’s wish come true, the joy on her face when she is with Boo is immeasurable. She loves to sit, cuddle and play with her ‘fur’ever friend, there is such a connection between them it is a joy to see. We cannot thank the wonderful Starlight Fairies enough. From start to finish have been so incredibly thoughtful and kind, and Ava’s smile speaks a thousand thank yous.”