Living with Cerebral Palsy

Angela & Celine performed “Baby” & “Never Say Never” – Great performance !!! I bet Justin Bieber would love how you sang

Last Saturday (11/13/11), even though it was cold and rainy outside, it was so warm inside Mrs. Eva Westfall(Board of Treasure) ‘s house, because we were all gathered for a good cause. I was honored to host an annual “Love Our Kids” fundraising event for Cerebral Palsy CareNet Organization. They provide services to individuals with Cerebral Palsy, and the money we raised goes to help children with Cerebral Palsy.

Never heard of Cerebral Palsy?  CP is a movement disorder caused by the permanent brain injuries that affect an infant during the time of birth or pregnancy causes the loss of abilities to lead a normal life. Their gross motor skills are affected, and kids often use crutches, or wheelchairs to move around. Kids with spastic CP, the most common type of CP, can’t relax their muscles or their muscles are really stiff. Even in some cases, kids have trouble speaking or can’t speak at all.

CP can’t be cured, but steps can be taken to help the child to start leading a normal life. Polfit Wellness is one of the many therapies that help them develop skills such as walking, sitting, bending, and crawling. Polfit Wellness offers Polish Fitness Training which include one-to-one, “hands-on” neuro-muscular retraining. They offer families of children with special needs a kind of help and hope that may change their lives for the better.

Angela Oyama and Benjamin Sun

Two of my friends have CP. Since birth, 14-year-old Angela Oyama and 15-year-old Benjamin Sun have been on their wheelchairs. They struggle on a daily basis with cerebral palsy. Benjamin has unpredictable seizures as a result of the injury and trauma to certain areas of his brain. His mother, Rebecca, devotes her entire day attending to him but at times broke down after noticing her son’s helplessness. But now through her faith in Jesus whom is her central source of strength, she finds the confidence to build a rewarding life together with her son.

Angela is a courageous and beautiful girl. She attends regular school despite all the obstacles she faces every day. She’s a serious die-hard fan of Justin Bieber, and her biggest dream is to meet JB. In fact, for one of the fund-raising programs, she and her friend Celine Chen sang two of Justin’s songs – “Baby” and “Never Say Never!” At the end she even raised herself a little in her wheelchair and shouted, “Never say never, everyone!” I think Justin Bieber would have LOVED their performance, and I sincerely hope that their paths will cross someday.

Although their journey is full of challenges, hardship, and difficulties, they show great endurance and perseverance despite their physical disabilities. Both of them maintain a regular schedule of physical and occupational therapy. You see, it is not only a vigorous workout to accomplish normal everyday tasks, but CP creates financial challenges. It’s a financial burden for the parents to care for a child with CP. That’s why CPCareNet gathered to financially aid those affected by CP.

At the event, everyone in attendance had a goal: not only to raise funds  but to educate people outside of CPCareNet about CP and to understand the disorder themselves. If you would like to donate, please contact me at this email

Published @ Walnut Patch



About Cassandra Hsiao

Cassandra Hsiao is a senior at OCSA (Orange County School of the Arts). Her work has been nationally recognized by the Scholastic Art and Writing Awards and National Student Poets Program. She has been chosen as finalists of playwriting competitions held by California Young Playwrights, The Blank Theatre, Writopia Labs, and Princeton University. Her poetry, essays and reviews have appeared in TeenReads, Jet Fuel Review, Feminine Inquiry, Aerie International and more. She also conducts print and on-camera interviews as a Star Reporter and Film Critic for multiple online outlets. She won a National Gracie Award in Student Online Video Host Category by The Alliance for Women in Media Foundation .

Posted on November 19, 2011, in Giving Back to the Community, News and tagged , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 3 Comments.

  1. Awesome… those kids are truly inspiring… they make me want to be the best I can be! :)

  2. Thanks so much for posting this and helping spread awareness of cerebral palsy! It sounds like Angela gave quite a performance – I’m sure Justin would be impressed! Anyway, if you (or any readers) are interested in learning more about cerebral palsy, check out Cerebral Palsy Family Network. It’s a great site full of resources and information relevant to all things CP. Keep up the blog!

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