Big-hearted businessman moved by Forfar girl’s story

Victoria Hendry Victoria who has a rare form of epilepsy is pictured with Brian Stewart who is trying to raise �10,000 for a special wheel chair and a special house chair for her.
Victoria Hendry Victoria who has a rare form of epilepsy is pictured with Brian Stewart who is trying to raise �10,000 for a special wheel chair and a special house chair for her.

A kind-hearted Angus businessman has set up a fundraising page to help a Forfar family to be able to have a meal together.

Ten-year-old Victoria Hendry, a pupil at Kingspark School in Dundee, is one of only around 100 children worldwide who have been diagnosed with a rare form of epilepsy called SCN8A.

Victoria and Brian

Victoria and Brian

She had her first seizure when she was six months old and was diagnosed with SCN8A a couple of years ago.

Victoria cannot speak, is a full-time wheelchair user, has global development delay and is tube fed.

She outgrew her house chair from the NHS in the summer and needs a specialist one, which would make her more comfortable and allow her to sit at the dinner table with her family.

Victoria’s family had a cake and candy stall at Forfar Academy’s Christmas shopping night and the remaining bakes were sold in a shop in Newtyle with a poster about Victoria’s condition.

Businessman Brian Stewart, owner of BS Properties and FMC Scotland Ltd, saw the poster and wanted to do something to help. He has set up a Just Giving page to raise £10,000 to purchase a special Panda Future 5 house chair and a Kiddo wheelchair, which would support and improve her posture.

Brian, who lives in Kirriemuir, said: “I thought about how comfortable the wheelchair and chair could make her.

“I felt I needed to do something to help and if I could help in a small way I should do it.

“Too many people are busy thinking about themselves. It just takes five minutes to help somebody else.

“I felt like it was the right thing to do.

“It’s not about me, I want to make sure she gets everything she needs.”

Victoria’s mum, Lisa Ritchie, who had never met Brian until he set up the page, wanted to say thank you to him from her and Victoria’s dad, Alyn Hendry.

She said: “He’s a very busy businessman but he obviously has a good heart.

“Victoria doesn’t have a chair in the house.

“She outgrew the one she had from the NHS and it was uplifted in June.

“She has to sit in her wheelchair or on the floor.

“It would make her more comfortable. That’s what means a lot to me - that she’s comfortable and she’s happy.

“When we are having dinner she can’t join us at the table because her wheelchair sits too low at the table.

“The wheelchair she has isn’t very supportive and we are worried about her back starting to curve.”

The JustGiving page can be found at: www.justgiving.com/crowdfunding/brian-stewart