BEING diagnosed with cancer certainly didn’t stop Dorothy Dunglison from coming up with a plan to help her disabled great-granddaughter, Iona-May Thorne.
Dorothy, who was receiving treatment at Worthing Hospital for early-stage myeloma – a cancer which affects her bone marrow – said she just couldn’t stand the thought of not being able to do something to help raise much-needed cash for the disabled five-year-old, from East Preston.
It was while she was lying in her hospital bed that Dorothy, 80, decided to combine her lifelong passion for knitting, with her love for Iona-May, to create a set of special, Easter ducks, complete with their own chocolate eggs – and what a stroke of genius it proved to be.
Widowed Dorothy, who lives in Durrington, said: “I’ve made almost 100 little ducks, and we’ve managed to raise about £200, which has been a delightful shock.
“I just felt that everyone else was fund-raising to help Iona-May, but I haven’t been able to, because of my health.
“I wanted to make sure I did something to help out. It’s done fantastically well.”
She said that her ducks, which have all been all stitched by hand, take about an hour-and-a-half each to do.
“They can be very fiddly at times,” she added, “particularly when I have to knit the French knot for the eyes and then stitch on the duck’s little beak.”
Dorothy said she was taken by complete surprise at the sudden popularity of her ducks, which she sold for £2 each.
All the money raised will go to help improve the quality of life for Iona-May, who suffers from quadriplegic cerebral palsy.
Iona-May’s family have so far raised almost £19,000 of the £30,000 total needed to improve their East Preston home for the disabled youngster.
Iona-May’s mum, Vicki, said she was stunned when she learnt of Dorothy’s fund-raising scheme, which for almost two weeks had been shrouded in secrecy.
She said: “It was a lovely surprise for us when we went to visit her. I think it’s helped her keep her mind occupied while being so ill in hospital. It’s such a sweet story.”
However, Vicki added that Iona-May still had a long and difficult road ahead and any donation was greatly appreciated.
All those wishing to support Iona-May can do so by visiting www.helpionamay.com