When she was nine days old, Phia suffered a brain haemorrhage and was rushed to hospital. Following the haemorrhage, she was diagnosed with hydrocephalus, a much underfunded and, therefore, largely unknown condition which can have devastating lifelong effects on children.
Thankfully, and after four operations on her brain, Pia pulled through. She and her family continue to live with the condition and are unsure of what the future holds, but they have been supported throughout by charity Shine. To say thank you, they decided to raise money and awareness of the amazing work they do through a sponsored swim.
On Saturday, 2 December, which is Phia’s eighth birthday, 72 swimmers will be taking part in Swim for Phia at Caterham School. Ranging from four to 64 years old, they will be attempting to swim a combined 24.5 miles, which is 1,568 lengths of a 25m pool and represents the distance travelled from East Surrey Hospital to Great Ormond Street Hospital, where Phia was taken when she had her brain haemorrhage.
Starting with the aim of reaching £1,000, they exceeded that within a week: their total currently stands at just over £3,000 and according to Just Giving are in the top 5% of fundraisers for November.
Read Phia’s full story, and donate via their Just Giving page.