Sutton schoolgirl Kira becomes a calendar girl to raise money to help beat her rare genetic condition

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An 11-year old Sutton schoolgirl has become a calendar girl to help raise money to help beat the rare genetic disease she suffers from.

Kira Carrington was thrilled to be pictured on the January page of the 2015 A-T Society calendar.

Kira was diagnosed with the condition Ataxia-Telangiectasia (A-T), a condition which causes disability and a weakened immune system. when she was 4.

Her mum Hayley Radford, who is well-known in Sutton for fundraising for the A-T Society, said: “The A-T society is the only charity which gives children with A-T and their families emotional support and leads medical research.

They hold weekends where families go to support each other and Kira was photographed for their calendar at the last one.

“She was thrilled to be a calendar girl.”

She described Kira - who attends Quarrydale School - as a typical cheeky 11-year old.

“She loves telling jokes and is very popular at her school.”

A-T is a degenerative condition. Symptoms include prominent red blood vessels in the eyes, and progressively worse co-ordination and speech difficulties.

Hayley said: “When Kira was diagnosed our lives came crashing down around us.

“Instead of watching her learn new skills and become more independent we faced the prospect of seeing her become more and more disabled - and there was nothing we could do.

“The A-T Society have been a lifeline for us.”

Kira features in the first A-T Society charity calendar alongside soldiers from 20 Transport Squadron Royal Logistics Corps and other children and families who live with A-T.

Warrant Officer Kelley McIntyre, Sergeant Jim Lilley, Sergeant Gavin Keen, Corporal Rob Clifford, Corporal Kirk Wilson and Corporal Dan Woodvine are all British servicemen who served in Afghanistan. They ran the US Marine Corps Marathon for the charity last year and were so touched by the condition that they wanted to stay involved with the work of the A-T Society.

The photos for the calendar were taken at the A-T Society’s Family Weekend and as well as featuring many families, also included South African Paralympic cyclist Roxanne Burns who has a mild form of A-T and is a keen supporter of the charity.

The calendar is available online at £9.99 + postage and packaging www.atsociety.org.uk/news/71/calendar-2015