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Pieces crafted with love to aid child's treatment

Robyn Crosthwaite crochets her wares to raise money for her granddaughter’s treatment.
Robyn Crosthwaite crochets her wares to raise money for her granddaughter’s treatment. Luka Kauzlaric

DIG a little deeper behind the tea-cosies and crocheted craft and you'll find a heart-warming story about a devoted grandmother showing her work at BAM.

Seven hours a day, every day, Robyn Crosthwaite labours to make the most adorable of creations to fund her granddaughter's ongoing medical treatment.

"All of the items in my stall are handcrafted," she said.

"We specialise in babies' clothing, but children's hats are a big seller too."

Mrs Crosthwaite, who picked up the hooks only four years ago, is now a regular face amid the stallholders.

And a little girl named Ayla is the motivation behind every item for sale in the stall.

"My granddaughter has a genetic brain disorder and we have to find $30,000 every year for her therapy," she said.

"You either help yourself or you don't get any help. I find a lot of my customers are curious about Ayla."

With a large banner at the entrance to the stall with the words Ayla's Rainbow Foundation, and a photo of her beloved granddaughter, Mrs Crosthwaite is grateful to her loyal customers and the group of ladies who help fill the stands each month for BAM.

Living with polymicrogyria presents many difficulties for Ayla's family, both financially and emotionally.

The condition creates similar symptoms to cerebral palsy, affecting both gross and fine motor skills.

This means that she is unable to walk or talk.

With her condition, Ayla has difficultly using her hands to feed herself, to play with her toys, communicating her needs and even clapping her hands.

The labour-intensive and financially demanding therapy for Ayla allows her to live as normal a life as possible.

And with the popularity of Mrs Crosthwaite's market stall, and her dedication to her family, hurdles are slowly being conquered.

A group of crafters, who go by the name of Craft4acause, donate their time and skills to assist Ayla, one tea-cosy at a time.

An open invitation is offered to anyone willing to knit, crochet or sew along once a month to aid the fundraising effort.

To aid via craft, go to the Craft4acause Facebook page, or to learn more about Ayla's journey, go to her mother's blog http://www.aylasrainbowconnection.blogspot.com.au

Or next time you are wandering the market stalls at BAM, stop in to browse the crazy tea-cosies and help make a difference to a little girl's life.

Topics:  bam, charity, crochet, medical treatment, tannum sands



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