Charity transforms Kingswinford family's back garden into a mini park

Stourbridge News: Shannon Mason with brother and sister Ryan-Lee and Lauren, mum and dad Kerrie and Lee, and charity workers Emma Richards, Steve Grove, Thomas Jones, Jenny Adey and Mark Cook. Shannon Mason with brother and sister Ryan-Lee and Lauren, mum and dad Kerrie and Lee, and charity workers Emma Richards, Steve Grove, Thomas Jones, Jenny Adey and Mark Cook.

A KINGSWINFORD youngster with a life-limiting illness now has her own mini park to play in, thanks to a team of volunteers, who spent four days working tirelessly to transform her back garden.

Shannon Mason has Fumarase Deficiency and doctors only expected her to live to be 18-months-old but the youngster, now aged 11, has defied the odds.

The condition means Shannon has frequent seizures, limited speech and is partially sighted.

Her mother, Kerrie Hale, aged 29, said that in its previous state, the garden wasn’t safe for Shannon to play in as it was uneven.

She said she wanted Shannon to be able to enjoy playing outside with her siblings, Ryan-Lee, aged eight and Lauren, aged seven, so when she heard about the Tipton-based charity, Love2Give, on Facebook, she got in touch to see if the volunteers would be willing to help out.

The charity’s volunteers help improve the lives of youngsters across the West Midlands by raising cash through various fundraising events for whatever the child needs, whether it be home improvements or new equipment.

But instead of passing the money on to another organisation to carry out the work, the volunteers take time off from their full-time jobs to see the project through themselves.

Steve Grove, co-founder of the charity, said the work had cost around £2,000.

He added: “Throughout the four days we’ve had around 20 volunteers help out. They all work full-time and have taken time off to help out. It’s nice to help out a genuine, local family and to raise the money for them.”

Miss Hale said she was thrilled when she saw the finished garden on Thursday (October 31) and said she “couldn’t put into words” how grateful she was to the volunteers: “They’ve all got a heart of gold, they’ve made such a difference to me, my partner Lee and Shannon.

“They’ve drawn Mr Tumble on the wall, levelled out all of the garden, put Astroturf down and put in a special swing for Shannon so I can sit on there with her and she has a trampoline. The back garden is like a little park.”

For more information about the charity, visit http://www.love2give.org.uk/

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