Help Han­nah feel nor­mal

Matamata Chronicle - - Out And About - ABBY BROWN

Han­nah Allen can feel nor­mal for four days with your help.

At Camp Twitch hav­ing tourette’s will not only be nor­mal but peo­ple will be en­cour­aged not to sup­press their tics.

The camp will be held in Ro­torua from Oc­to­ber 4 to 7 by Tourette’s As­so­ci­a­tion New Zealand.

Han­nah is the only per­son in Mata­mata reg­is­tered with hav­ing the dis­or­der.

She hasn’t meet the ten other suf­fer­ers in the Waikato, or any­one who has it, since be­ing di­ag­nosed in Jan­uary of this year.

Her mum Melissa said Han­nah prob­a­bly had it since she was seven or eight.

Con­trary to most peo­ple’s per­cep­tion it doesn’t cause her to swear.

That is every­one’s per­cep­tion that they will be swear­ing but only ten per cent of all suf­fer­ers have that and she doesn’t have that,’’ her mum Melissa said.

She said they were lucky that she only has a mild form of it.

Her tics in­clude open­ing her mouth, grunt­ing, bounc­ing off the walls and stut­ter­ing when she is over ex­cited.

Melissa took her to a doc­tor af­ter notic­ing those tics and hav­ing a few com­ments from other par­ents.

‘‘She plays hockey and when she is open­ing her mouth all the time her mouth guard falls out. She man­ages her tics bet­ter now.’’

Although the tics make Han­nah feel self­con­scious, both her and her mum say her Mata­mata In­ter­me­di­ate teach­ers are sup­port­ive.

The 11-year-old’s friends are also re­ally good about it.

Be­cause the Allen fam­ily don’t sim­ply want to ask for money, Han­nah will be sell­ing her hand­made book­marks at the Mata­mata markets.

The next mar­ket, which will be held at Mata­mata Pri­mary, will be on June 11.

The Tourette’s As­so­ci­a­tion is also fundrais­ing through a givealit­tle page, givealit­tle.co.nz/ do­nate/cause/camptwitch2016, to make the camp costs a low as pos­si­ble for the 46 fam­i­lies that have reg­is­tered for the event so far.

At the 2014 camp, which hap­pened be­fore Han­nah’s di­ag­no­sis, 97 peo­ple at­tended and meet other peo­ple with Tourette’s for the first time.

The Tourette’s As­so­ci­a­tion said the event­was an op­por­tu­nity that those with Tourette’s craved.

Garth McVicar from the Sen­si­ble Sen­tenc­ing Trust will be speak­ing at the Mata­mata RSA on June 15.

Han­nah Allen, who has tourette’s, will be sell­ing her hand­made book­marks at the Mata­mata markets to fund her trip to Camp Twitch.

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