News

Little Grace's spirited fight in the US

DETERMINATION: Two-year-old Gin Gin toddler Grace Lukan has cerebral palsy and is in Los Angeles undergoing three weeks of intense physical therapy with her therapist, Jess.
DETERMINATION: Two-year-old Gin Gin toddler Grace Lukan has cerebral palsy and is in Los Angeles undergoing three weeks of intense physical therapy with her therapist, Jess. Lucy Lukan

TWO-YEAR-OLD Gin Gin toddler Grace Lukan brings a whole new meaning to the words strength and determination.

While cerebral palsy has taken away her ability to control her body movements, it hasn't taken away her spirit.

Little Grace and her mum, Lucy, are now in Los Angeles so the youngster can receive three weeks of intensive physical therapy - something that is not offered in Australia.

"The therapy is intense and extensive," Mrs Lukan said.

"All of this is not available anywhere in Australia which is frustrating because Grace responds really well and quickly to the therapy."

The toddler spends four hours each day with a therapist at the Napa Center - a place which offers therapy for a wide range of neuromuscular disorders.

Together they do a variety of exercises using various equipment to improve Grace's strength, balance, reflexes and muscle co-ordination.

"She works really hard and for her to do simple movements is a mammoth task," Mrs Lukan said.

"For example, for her to keep her head in what they call midline - straight in the middle - she's not just using her neck muscles but putting her whole body into it.

"We don't realise how many muscles are in play to keep our head up straight and being able to turn our head with ease."

Mrs Lukan said the repetition of the exercises was a challenge for Grace.

"She has to repeat a movement over 500 times for it to be receptive to the neural pathways of the brain."

Despite the physical exhaustion, Mrs Lukan said her daughter was succeeding in leaps and bounds.

"She has shown me what a determined, resilient and amazing little girl she is," she said.

Mrs Lukan said the therapists at the centre were extremely dedicated and "they don't put limits on the kids".

"You can see they love what they do and love the kids they work with," she said.

Topics:  cerebral palsy, grace lukan




Stay Connected

Update your news preferences and get the latest news delivered to your inbox.

3 easy dinner recipes your kids will love, and so will you

No Caption

THERE is a middle ground! Dinners fit for kids and adults.

How to reduce your child's risk of food allergies

ABOUT 90% of food allergies are caused by just seven foods.

5 good mental health habits for kids (and parents)

CRYING OUT FOR HELP: The demand for counselling support for children and young people is increasing.

FORMING good habits early is critical for your child's mental health.

Smack or no smack - where do you stand?

THE debate is reignited - is smacking acceptable?

Susie O'Neill: Why I stopped smacking my children

Swimming legend Susie O'Neill says she has stopped smacking her kids.

“I (smacked) because that’s what I knew growing up."

Introducing a step-parent into the family

Introducing a step-parent into the family can be stressful for the children, as well as the new parent.

THERE is no easy way to introduce a step parent into the family.

FACES OF BUNDY: Caitlyn cultivates dream career

CANE TRENDS: Bundaberg Canegrowers' Caitlyn Killick at AgroTrend.

Something different every day in role

Cold shock as temps dive below 6 in Bundaberg

CHILLY: Steam rising off the Burnett River at Cedars Crossing, South Kolan, on Sunday morning.

June six degrees colder than average

Is this state’s cheapest house?

BARGAIN BUY: Is this North Bundaberg property the cheapest home in Queensland?

Becoming a real estate mogul is all about risk and reward

Latest deals and offers

WIDE BAY LEAGUE: Cameron Hanrahan talks about United Warriors' win

WIDE BAY LEAGUE: Cameron Hanrahan talks about United Warriors' 4-3 win over Sunbury...

Darren Pratt Local Farmer

LOCALLY GROWN: Darren Pratt with his box of fresh local produce.Photo: Mike Knott / NewsMail

LOCALLY GROWN: Darren Pratt with his box of fresh local produce.

Justice Lucy McCallum

Justice Lucy McCallum

Justice Lucy McCallum says she reduced Oliver Curtis's sentence due to comments...

Is this state’s cheapest house?

BARGAIN BUY: Is this North Bundaberg property the cheapest home in Queensland?

Becoming a real estate mogul is all about risk and reward

CHEAP AS CHIPS: 6 Bundy houses under $199,000

Cheap houses being sold in the region