Narromine parents go the distance to support their daughter

Amy and Murray pictured with their daughter Matilda, friends and family after completing the 2015 City2Surf in Bondi on Sunday 9 August!Amy and Murray pictured with their daughter Matilda, friends and family after completing the 2015 City2Surf in Bondi on Sunday 9 August!

Amy and Murray, had a very special reason to complete the 14k Sun-Herald City2Surf challenge on Sunday 9 August – they did it for their daughter Matilda, who was born deaf. 

Matilda was born with Bilateral Microtia Atresia, a rare condition that affects the development of the outer ear and inner ear canal. When she was just six weeks old, Matilda heard sound for the first time when she was fitted with the latest Cochlear Baha Bone Conduction Sound Processor. 

At three months of age Matilda’s family began accessing weekly support through Royal Institute for Deaf and Blind Children (RIDBC). Each year hundreds of families of children with vision or hearing loss living in regional and remote areas of Australia are given access to specialist therapy and support through RIDBC Teleschool’s high-quality videoconferencing technology. 

“RIDBC Teleschool has been a fantastic support,” said Amy. “We live on a remote farm in Central West New South Wales where access to services is not always easy. The ability to access weekly sessions from our home through videoconferencing has been an invaluable support to our family.” 

RIDBC Consultant, Leonie Walsh, is working on developing Matilda’s early communication skills, helping her reach age appropriate listening, language and vocalising milestones. 

“Matilda is making excellent progress. She is responding to sound beautifully. She especially loves listening to mum and dad talking and singing to her,” said Leonie. “It’s wonderful to work with Matilda and her parents Amy and Murray, who are so very dedicated to ensuring their daughter gets the best start in life.” 

Amy and Murray decided to raise much needed funds for RIDBC through the City2Surf challenge, and they smashed their fundraising goal, raising over $1,500. 

“Our family and friends were so supportive - we hit our fundraising goal in no time. It was fantastic to take part in the challenge with my husband, my friends and with Matilda in her pram. I loved the fact that Matilda was a part of it with us,” said Amy. 

“It will be wonderful to show Matilda one day what we together, as a family, have done to say thank you to RIDBC for all their help.” 

RIDBC is Australia’s largest non-government provider of therapy, education and cochlear implant services for people with vision or hearing loss, supporting thousands of adults, children and their families, each year. 

RIDBC relies heavily on fundraising and community support to be able to continue to make a difference in children's lives.