Sophia Banger, an 11 year old girl from Southampton, has received a new, state-of-the-art, powered wheelchair to help boost her mobility, thanks to the joint fundraising efforts of customers and staff at Cashino adult gaming centre on the High Street, Poole.
Sophia who lives with Mum, Stephanie, Dad, Nicky, Brother, Harvey (aged 13) and Presley, the dog is in her last year at Hiltingbury Junior School and suffers from Cerebral Palsy, which severely affects her movement.
Sophia currently has a basic manual wheelchair which takes a lot of energy to manoeuvre around the school and consequently when she gets to lessons, she is too tired to concentrate.
The new state-of-the-art, powered wheelchair was presented to Sophia yesterday [Thursday 24th November 2015] and will give her new independence and opportunities to take part in a wider range of activities at school.
Sophia’s mum, Stephanie, said: “We really appreciate Cashino’s help and generosity. Sophia is very excited to receive the powered wheelchair that will give her greater independence and enable her to have the same freedom to go wherever she wants to, whenever she wants with her friends and not tire so easily at school.”
Cashino operates 155 adult gaming centres across the country and is one of the main fundraisers for CHIPS – a charity set up on behalf of the casino and gaming industry that aims to provide specialised powered wheelchairs for children with severe mobility problems.
Michelle Woodrough, Cashino area manager, added: “Sophia is an extraordinary young girl and is so deserving of this wheelchair. It is absolutely fantastic to see how excited she is by it, and it makes all the fundraising efforts from all of our staff and customers throughout our estate worth it.”
Co-founder of the CHIPS charity, Linda Lindsay said: “It is so important for CHIPS that our donors see the results of their hard work and we try to ensure that all the recipients are local to where the funds have been raised. Cashino has been amazing and to date has donated a massive £ 401,966 allowing CHIPS to provide 81 powered wheelchairs up and down the country.”
Since its formation CHIPS has raised over £1,500,000 and presented over 400 wheelchairs to children throughout the UK.