Maddie's Tack Room makeover
Willberry’s Wish fairies were contacted by Lauren Bowes, a family friend of Rachael and Alun Jervis to ask for some help in granting a special wish for their 14 year old daughter Maddie. Maddie, a typical pony and sport mad teenager had been competing her beloved pony Eyros when she began to get terrible pains in her legs. After comprehensive hospital tests she was diagnosed with osteosarcoma, a cancer which affects growing bones, and the family’s world turned upside down. Maddie underwent an operation to replace part of her femur and knee in a bid to cut out the affected bones, but as she lay in recovery doctors had to break the news to her parents that, during the operation, it was possible some of the cancer cells had been pushed further up into the remaining bone, leaving no other option but to completely remove the femur at a later date.
It was at this terrible time, whilst she was undergoing brutal rounds of treatments prior to the amputation, that Lauren contacted the Wish team with an unusual request. Maddie’s pony was being looked after by friends, the place at her usual yard was very basic and they wanted to give it the DIY SOS treatment to make it a practical but comfortable place for Maddie to use when she was able to see Eyros again.
Well of course Willberry’s fairies jumped at the chance to create a special place for a special and incredibly brave young girl, and in January Willberry and his team of volunteers travelled to Wales on a mission!
There was a lot of work to be done, and Maddie’s wish was for the tack room to have a ‘Shoot Room’ theme. A false roof was needed as well as flooring, building up of a doorway, painting and to get items that would help Maddie be able to care for her horses easily when she returned. Willberry thought a wardrobe for storage would be helpful, adding some shelving so it was easier for Maddie to access everything. The team put up saddle racks and hooks, all to enable Maddie to be able to look after her horses whilst enjoying a warm dry and cosy retreat when she needed it.
This was how it looked before:
Maddie’s horses had gone to stay at a friend’s house while Maddie was in and out of hospital. She missed them so much, but the thought of getting them back home was what kept her going.
Willberry got everyone involved, even Rhodri. Alun, Maddie’s Dad never knew he had such skills, while Willberry kept a close eye on the craftsmanship!
New roof to keep everything snuggly! Important addition of the stag’s head. Amazing new floor!
Everything Maddie would need ………….
When Willberry was on site in January Maddie’s temperature spiked and she had to return to hospital immediately, so sadly they never got to meet. Covid 19 then stopped the grand opening with lockdown and restrictions. Maddie’s operation went ahead and in May she had her leg amputated. The pressure was on to get everything finished, so it was all steam ahead to get horses and everything put in place for her return.
Finally Eyros came home to his beautiful stable ……………… AND THEN
Maddie came home!! Willberry was absolutely delighted to see Maddie back where she belongs, and with the animals and people she loves. Her family and friends even laid on a welcome home party for her, Splashberry, Maddie's Berry Pony didn’t want to miss out and has found his pride of place in the tack room and look at the finished result!
Willberry and the Wish team were so delighted to be able to help such an amazing young girl who has such passion and drive for her horses and is already planning her future with her new dreams of competing in the Paralympics. We know there will be no stopping her, and this final photo from her mum just 8 weeks after her amputation says it all..
❤️ DREAM BIG MADDIE AND NEVER GIVE UP ️❤️
Read more about Maddie's story in the Wales Online: http://bit.ly/33bKqHT