Collier Row teenager designs cards to raise money for hospital that helped straighten a curve in her spine
PUBLISHED: 17:00 04 September 2018
Katie designed two cards to raise money for the hospital after she successfully underwent surgery 18 months ago to straighten a curve in her spine.
An inspirational teenager from Collier Row has designed two charity greeting cards for Evelina London Children’s Hospital after receiving life-changing spinal surgery.
Katie Braybrook, 15, designed two cards to raise money for the hospital after she successfully underwent surgery 18 months ago to straighten a curve in her spine.
Katie was diagnosed with scoliosis, a condition that causes the spine to curve, aged 12, after her mother, Sue, noticed her posture was changing.
The condition led to the teenager’s spine curving in two places, which meant she could no longer stand up straight.
In January last year surgeons at Evelina London straightened the curve in Katie’s back by placing titanium rods and screws along her spine during a six-hour operation. Katie made a full recovery from the surgery, which corrected her posture and made it easier for her to walk.
Following the surgery Katie decided to design a charity greeting card for the hospital to thank the medics who treated her.
The design features a snow leopard, also the name of one the children’s wards, and a flower with the same colours as the Evelina London logo.
The design, which was drawn in coloured pencils, has been used for both thank you cards and blank greeting cards, and have been sold by the hospital’s fundraising team since June with all of the money raised going to Evelina London.
In addition to designing the cards, Katie has raised £680 for the hospital by doing a sponsored haircut.
Katie said: “I’m always trying to think of new ways to help support Evelina London and designing a greeting card was another idea that I came up with. I really enjoy drawing and being creative, so developing the design was a lot of fun. I decided to incorporate the hospital’s logo and a snow leopard, as I was keen to use images that were recognisable and distinctive to the hospital.
“I love fundraising for Evelina London, it’s my way of saying thank you to the fantastic staff who looked after me. The care that I’ve received has been amazing, especially during my recovery from spinal surgery. The weeks immediately after the surgery were extremely tough. I couldn’t really move or do anything without support, but the doctors and nurses who looked after me were brilliant. I couldn’t have asked for better care.”
Katie was one of the speakers at the Evelina London Inspiring Youth conference, which celebrates young people’s involvement in improving patient care.
She spoke about her fundraising work and raising awareness of scoliosis.
Katie also designed the conference programme front cover, which features an image of five balloons, the same colours used in the Evelina London logo, tied together.
Katie said: “I really liked speaking at the conference. I think it’s a great way for former and current young patients to come together to share their experiences and ideas on how care at the hospital could be even better. I’m really passionate about supporting Evelina London so being able to work directly with the hospital really means a lot to me.”
Katie’s mother Sue said: “I’m extremely proud of Katie. Ever since her spinal surgery she has been really determined to support Evelina London in any way she can. She’s constantly thinking about she how can give back to the hospital, from fundraising to helping improve patient care, to bringing cakes to her appointments.
“She’s gone through a lot with her back surgery. The recovery was very long and gruelling but she remained positive and upbeat throughout. Instead of dwelling on the difficulties she’s encountered, she’s focused on helping others. She constantly amazes me.”
Jonathan Lucas, a consultant orthopaedic and spine surgeon at Evelina London who treated Katie, said: “I’m so full of admiration for Katie. Since her spinal surgery she has given so much back and has been completely committed to supporting Evelina London and young people with scoliosis.
“It has been a real pleasure getting to know Katie and her family and I always enjoy hearing about all the amazing things she’s doing to help improve care for patients at Evelina London. Katie’s determination to make a positive difference to the lives of our patients is hugely inspiring.”