Cork girl (12) takes centre stage in fundraiser for charity close to her heart

Cork girl (12) takes centre stage in fundraiser for charity close to her heart

Dancers from the Joan Denise Moriarty School of Dance making their fundraising video at Fota House & Gardens, Cork to mark scoliosis awareness month. Grace Murphy-Conway who has scoliosis pictured with her friends. Picture: Dan Linehan

A 12-YEAR-OLD Cork girl who has endured over 50 operations in a bid to correct a musculoskeletal disorder is taking centre stage in a fundraiser for a charity that has helped her along the way.

Grace Murphy-Conway, who was diagnosed at six months old with kyphoscoliosis along with a number of other health issues, is dancing in a fundraising video coordinated by Joan Denise Moriarty School of Dance, where Grace is a student.

Following the success of previous fundraising videos, the dance school decided to create another to mark Scoliosis Awareness Month in June. Funds raised from the video will go to Straight Ahead Ireland.

“Straight Ahead Ireland is a medical support group affiliated to the CMRF which provides surgery, support and medical equipment for children with orthopaedic conditions.

“Surgeons perform the operations pro-bono. These surgeons have been looking after two of our students in Crumlin Children’s Hospital since they were born,” said city centre dance school owner, Sharon Manning.

 Dancers from the Joan Denise Moriarty School of Dance making their fundraising video at Fota House & Gardens, Cork to mark scoliosis awareness month. Grace Murphy-Conway who has scoliosis pictured with her friends. Picture: Dan Linehan
Dancers from the Joan Denise Moriarty School of Dance making their fundraising video at Fota House & Gardens, Cork to mark scoliosis awareness month. Grace Murphy-Conway who has scoliosis pictured with her friends. Picture: Dan Linehan

The dance, which has been recorded in a number of locations across the city, is based around Grace and her life. It will feature vocals from Grace’s class in her school, St Mary’s on the Hill in Knocknaheeny.

Grace, who does tap, ballet and performance classes, has been with Joan Denise Moriarty School of Dance for the last four years.

“She is one of the most determined and courageous students you can meet,” Ms Manning said.

Speaking to The Echo, Grace’s mother Lisa said her daughter “lives and breathes” dance and that it has provided an important outlet for her.

To date, Grace has needed over 50 surgeries for her condition, with more planned in the future.

“She only has the use of one arm. One arm doesn’t work — she can move it but the hand is completely twisted but we’re finally after getting word that they’re going to do a fusion surgery on her hand to turn it around which is fantastic.”

The fundraising video will be published on the Joan Denise Moriarty School of Dance social media channels on Saturday.

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