A ten-year-old girl from Hengoed will take part in the Alzheimer’s Society memory walk in Cardiff on Saturday, October 5.
Olivia Donaldson, who has autism and dyspraxia, was inspired to do the two kilometre walk after taking part in ‘dementia friends’ sessions at Ystrad Mynach Primary School.
The sessions saw people with dementia visit the school to take part in weekly creative sessions.
Olivia’s mother, Sarah Thomas, said: “Myself and Olivia’s dad will be joining her on the walk.
“Olivia has a family member with dementia too. She wants to help find a cure for it.
“Anything she can raise will help, we don’t have a target as such.
“This will be an amazing achievement for her.”
Olivia decided she wanted to do the walk after hearing about it on the radio.
Mrs Thomas said: “Olivia is nervous about doing it but she’s excited too.
“She knows her own mind well. She’s very giving and loving, always looking out for other people.
“When she told me she wanted to do the walk, we signed up there and then.
“Olivia was born prematurely at 30 weeks, weighing 2lb 4oz. She is totally amazing and the thing I’m most proud of her for is her determination and the way she cares about other people.
“She is my little miracle.”
Natalie Flowers, Aneurin Bevan University Health Board’s Caerphilly dementia co-ordinator, taught the sessions at Ystrad Mynach Primary.
Ms Flowers said: “Olivia was a credit to herself and her school.
“She developed such a strong relationship with the patients involved in the project and showed such compassion, empathy and understanding towards all involved.
“She generated such a positive energy- her enthusiasm was infectious. Good luck Olivia.”
Sue Phelps, country director for Alzheimer’s Society Cymru, said: “We’re so pleased that Olivia is uniting against dementia at the Cardiff Memory Walk.
“There are over 45,000 people living with dementia in Wales today.
“Every pound raised through Memory Walk will help Alzheimer’s Society provide information and support, improve care, fund research and create lasting change for people affected by dementia. We extend our best wishes to Olivia and to everyone who is taking part.”
To make a donation to Olivia’s cause, visit https://bit.ly/2KNjFC0.