Disabled woman’s charity is her ‘legacy’

WH 040414  Anya Deakin set up a charity to help a school in Gambia. Photo by Derek Martin SUS-140404-185440001
WH 040414 Anya Deakin set up a charity to help a school in Gambia. Photo by Derek Martin SUS-140404-185440001

A DISABLED woman who ‘stumbled upon’ a Gambian school while on a soul searching trip following a hysterectomy which went wrong has set up a charity to help it.

Nathanya Deakin, known as Anya, 42, of Avendale Close, Goring, made the trip in December, after a rare complication to the operation left her struggling to walk.

Unable to work, she has now set up Anya’s Wish, to help fund the community school.

She said: “The trip was just to work out what I was going to do with my life because I am young and can’t carry on working.

“I have got a degree and I was feeling lost as I wasn’t going to be a midwife any more, but I didn’t expect to come back and set up a charity.

“It was a bit of soul searching. This for me now is my life and legacy.”

The school was set up by the community for children whose families cannot afford to pay for their education.

Wanting to help but unsure of how, Anya returned to the UK and decided to set up the charity.

She is affiliated to the Mondo Challenge Foundation, which does similar work across the world.

Anya said her work was a way of making her situation into a positive.

She said: “I had a hysterectomy which just went wrong. I was angry at first. It is a very rare complication.

“I have no normal sensation to any pelvic organs and I have difficulty walking a great distance without any sort of pain.

“This is a way of making a positive out of this.”

Anya held the charity’s first fundraising event at her parent’s house in Seamill Park Crescent last week.

Her four children are also helping the cause and are planning to do a parachute jump.

The charity hopes to fund expansions to the school to help more needy children.

Anya said: “At the end of January, we sent out 10 parcels, which contained computers which were donated by a local company.

“At the moment, we need to raise £10,000 for land, £10,000 to build four classrooms, two toilet blocks and an office, £5,000 to furnish the rooms and in addition to that, we plan to build a multi-use games arena, which will be another £5,000, which they will be able to rent out.”