THREE-year-old Audrey isn’t able to walk and talk, but her eyes tell you everything.
Audrey was born with Rett Syndrome, a very rare condition which is usually found in young girls. Rett Syndrome affects brain development in children, causing them serious mobility and communication difficulties.
Since she was a baby, Audrey has attended Lyrebird Early Learning Centre in Carrum Downs. Centre manager Mikayla Burton says that although Audrey cannot speak, she uses her eyes to grab people’s attention.
“Audrey in a nutshell has just got a smile that lights up the room. She is very receptive to people she has a relationship with – she laughs and smiles and looks you dead in the eyes. She understands everything that’s happening,” Burton said. “That’s why it’s so important to raise funds to support her.”
Burton is organising a fundraiser to help Audrey’s family buy technology to assist her. They hope to be able to access “Eye Gazing Technology”, which will track Audrey’s eye movements to help her communicate.
“Her family got involved with this technology, she has had a couple of trial sessions now to see how she responds to it,” Burton said. “It communicates for her as she looks at a screen. In these initial stages she has an option of two different things – in the trial stage she’s asked a question and her eyes look at the response, and as she gets more advanced there’s more options.”
The fundraiser will be held at the Lyrebird Early Learning Centre, 191 Lyrebird Drive in Carrum Downs, between 6.30pm and 8.30pm on 3 March. There will be face painting, a sausage sizzle, raffles, and stalls.
The gofundme for Audrey’s family has already raised more than $12,000.
To donate visit gofundme.com/f/donate-to-help-audrey-to-find-her-voice