Firm’s donations help smash Melissa target

Julie Hopwood has  been given �3,000 by Cressida Dimmock of ASOS.com to pay for a diasbled chair for her paralysed daughter Melissa.Julie,Melissa and Cressida surounded by staff and family.
Julie Hopwood has been given �3,000 by Cressida Dimmock of ASOS.com to pay for a diasbled chair for her paralysed daughter Melissa.Julie,Melissa and Cressida surounded by staff and family.

A WOMAN who was left paralysed when she developed a sudden brain condition has been given a special gift thanks to the Express.

Melissa Rusling was a “bubbly” young woman before a brain cyst left her unable to move, talk or eat.

Her devoted mother Julie Hopwood was backed by the Express as she hoped to raise £3,000 for a specialist chair to provide vital support for her daughter’s body and give her a better quality of life.

People were so inspired by her story that they started organising fundraising events to raise the money.

But now Mrs Rusling’s former employer has stumped up all of the cash to pay for the chair to help her at Dearnevale Care Home, in Grimethorpe, where she is now a permanent resident.

The 27-year-old worked at the logistics office for fashion website ASOS, in Grimethorpe, before becoming ill.

ASOS corporate responsibility manager Cressida Dimmock said: “We first heard about Melissa’s situation through our ASOS colleague Jenny Stafford - an assistant buyer in our Menswear team.

“Jenny is from Wakefield and her family still live in the area. When Jenny’s mother Julie read the newspaper article about Melissa she asked Jenny if ASOS could help.

“We were extremely moved by Melissa’s story and we were very pleased that there was something we could do to help her and her family.”

The donation means other fundraising events which are planned across the district will help pay for a night scheme and lights at the care home, which looks after 40 people.

Mrs Hopwood, 47, of Chapel Street, Ryhill, said: “I am absolutely overwhelmed by the amount of support we have got since being in the paper.

“People have been so kind. I would do anything for my children, as any parent would.”

She is hosting a charity event from 7pm on Friday at the Ryhill Liberal Club, which will include Moulin Rouge fancy dress, live music, an auction and raffle.