Purple push raises epilepsy awareness

IT'S every mother's worst nightmare.

One minute toddler William Martin was happily playing, the next his little body was violently shaking. 

That first seizure in August last year came as a shock for his parents, Nicole and Stuart, who are now on a mission to raise awareness of epilepsy.

"It came out of the blue and lasted three minutes," Mrs Martin said.

"It was very confronting. 

"He spent a week in hospital here having tests. 

"We then went to see a neurologist in Sydney and there were more tests. 

"He was diagnosed with myoclonic astatic epilepsy. 

"I knew what epilepsy was but I had no real understanding of what it meant. 

"I had seen it on TV but to see it happen to my own child made me realise how much I didn't know."

Seven months after William's first attack, the two-year-old is not yet seizure free but Mrs Martin said with the help of medication they were taking small steps towards that goal.

Last weekend, she held a purple-themed morning tea at Pioneer Park Museum and about 270 people attended.

With the help of friends Michelle Johanson, Lisa Malone and Alecia Webb, the passionate mum was able to raise $10,000 in six weeks.

"We had a lot of people support us," Mrs Martin said.

"Atkins Hydroponics dedicated the sale of their tomatoes at the markets, which was a huge injection of funds, Barellan Central School and Griffith East also turned purple. 

"The Good Start Early Learning Centres in Griffith also got behind us.

"I'm glad we have been able to raise the profile of epilepsy in our community - that was our main aim. 

"The fact we raised so much money for Epilepsy Australia was amazing. We will do it again next year."

Smartphone
Tablet - Narrow
Tablet - Wide
Desktop