“I feel like I have my legs back”


After having her leg amputated, Emma was able to buy a mobility scooter thanks to a Crisis Grant from Caritas Westminster. This story has been provided by the Irish Chaplaincy who have been supporting Emma throughout her traumatic experience.

A Reason to Live – Emma’s Story 

The Irish Chaplaincy team is currently supporting a young 35-year-old woman who in February last year, was airlifted to hospital and put into a medical coma for 28 days. She had a rare but serious bacterial infection that affects the tissue beneath the skin and surrounding muscles and organs resulting in the amputation of her left leg. Her mother was told that her daughter had a 2% chance of survival and was advised to turn off Life Support. She declined!  Initially Emma had no use in both arms, this is slowly improving with intensive therapy at a Care Home, however, she struggles with the use of her right leg as it remains severely damaged.  Although Emma’s long-term prognosis isn’t yet fully known, what is certain is she will need lots of care for many months if not years and will have to endure years of skin graft operations. 

Thankfully, the team here at the Irish Chaplaincy has been able to support both mother and daughter: practically, by advocating on their behalf to statutory bodies; financially, with small donations for telephone credit, travel assistance as well as essential sundries and a visit from two of our caseworkers; emotionally, being available at the end of the telephone anytime for either mother or daughter and spiritually, through prayer. Additionally, with the great help of our friends at Caritas, who provided a mobility scooter, Emma is now able to get around better, saying “I feel like I have my legs back”.  

She added about the scooter:

“I cannot tell you how much your support has helped me.  I would have struggled to cope without your help.  Not only have I got some independence now, the impact on my mental health, which has improved too, has been positive.  I couldn’t be happier, thank you”.

Both mother and daughter are extremely remarkable and humbling; truly inspirational and doing their very best to stay positive. They are an absolute pleasure to work with and the essence of our Chaplaincy’s purpose. We would be so very grateful for your thoughts and prayers to help them get through this very difficult time and help us to continue in the work we love to do in supporting those most in need. The young woman said to one of those who came to visit her: “You’ve given me a reason to live.” 

The latest chapter in this story is that, with the help of the Irish Chaplaincy, Emma has managed to secure suitable accommodation where she can live with her mother after her mother is released from an open prison in a few months’ time. Now Emma not only has a reason to live, she also has her own place to live in.

Click here to find out more about Caritas Grants.



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