Changing child amputees’ lives
369. Sarah Hope
370. Victoria Bacon
Twins Sarah and Victoria from London and Norfolk who overcame adversity to take action supporting hundreds of children with amputated limbs - they will receive their awards at a gathering of 3,000 people as part of the US celebration of 25 years of Points of Light in Houston, Texas.
Eight years ago, disaster struck when a bus in Barnes careered off the road and ploughed into Sarah Hope, her 2 year old daughter Pollyanna and her mother Elizabeth. Elizabeth sadly died as a result of the accident, Sarah was seriously injured and Pollyanna had to have her leg amputated. They had been on their way to visit Victoria in hospital, as she had given birth to her first child, a boy called Rollo just two days earlier.
After the tragedy, together twins Sarah Hope and Victoria Bacon decided they wanted to do good work in their mother’s name. Having seen how much Pollyanna benefitted from a prosthetic leg, they founded Elizabeth’s Legacy of Hope, to provide support for children across the globe who have lost their limbs through war, accidents, and lack of access to medical care. As the 369th and 370th winners, their special days coincided with America’s annual Points of Light conference, celebrating 25 years since President Bush launched the awards.
Elizabeth’s Legacy of Hope has already changed the lives of over 250 child amputees in Tanzania, Sierra Leone and Liberia, and has trained an orthopaedic surgeon who has treated over 1,000 young disabled patients in the region. Just last month, the charity launched a new project in Andhra Pradesh, India to support 80 child amputees with long-term and holistic support, including access to prosthetics, surgeries and emotional care. This will have vital empowering effects on the children, enabling them to regain mobility, rebuild their self-esteem and go to school.
The Prime Minister recorded a video message paying tribute to President Bush and thanking everyone at the conference in Houston, Texas for their work recognising thousands of Points of Light in the US:
“I want to pay tribute to President Bush and to everyone who has been involved in Points of Light over the last twenty-five years, for all that you have done to lead the world in recognising outstanding volunteers and enabling their service to inspire others. With the great honour of office, comes the opportunity to do something special that can reach beyond politics. To hold up the very best of humanity. And to challenge the rest of us to follow their example.”
On Sarah and Victoria’s award the Prime Minister David Cameron said:
“Sarah and Victoria and their families have shown incredible strength in overcoming a terrible accident and working tirelessly to help others facing life-changing injuries. By providing the same excellent medical care Pollyanna received to children in developing nations, they have given children hope for the future, enabled them to be active and live their lives to the full. Sarah and Victoria should be extremely proud of all they’ve achieved in memory of their mother Elizabeth. I am delighted they have been able to share the importance of their work on an international stage.”
Sarah and Victoria said:
“It is such an honour and delight for us to have been chosen to be Points of Light; bringing light out of darkness is the message of Elizabeth’s Legacy of Hope; we hope this reward will enable us to reach out to hundreds more struggling amputee children in the poorest parts of the world. However, in going to the States we are also representing all the British Point of Light winners and the hundreds of thousands of volunteers up and down America and the United Kingdom who selflessly, generously, and tirelessly do so much to put smiles on the faces of others; in doing so enriching their own lives.”