THE parents of Crowthorne toddler Amy Louise Collins, who suffers from a severe form of myscular dystrophy, have been told she needs a special computer to help her write.

Doctors who spoke to her mother Mandy at Battle Hospital, Reading, last week said they believed she would be severely limited in her writing ability.

The news came as a blow to Mrs Collins, after the family had celebrated Amy Louise's second birthday with a party at their home in Bramley Grove.

She said: "Amy is a bright little girl and we always hoped that she would grow up as normally as possible and go to university one day.

"She can hold a pen but doctors don't believe she will have the stamina to write much more than her name.

"This news hit us very hard as it was not even something we had even considered being a problem for her."

The computer is likely to cost £2,000 and will need to be adjusted for Amy Louise to operate it.

The appeal set up for Amy Louise has reached its first target, to buy an electric wheelchair for the toddler.

But family and friends realise that they still need to raise lots more money for her.

This Saturday, there is a ‘Pudding and Pastimes' event in aid of the appeal at Ascot Baptist Church Hall, North Ascot.

It starts at 7.30pm and tickets can be bought on the door for £6, which includes a glass of wine.

Mandy stressed that the National Health Service are doing all they can.

She said: "The NHS have supplied a number of essential items such as a special bed mattress and a high chair, but funds are obviously limited.

"Bigger items are beyond their limit so we will continue to fundraise in order to provide items which will all give Amy a better quality of life."

Despite this latest setback for the toddler, Amy remains her usual happy self when she said "I like my new car" at a practice session last week.

This Saturday, there is a ‘Pudding and Pastimes' event at Ascot Baptist Church Hall, North Ascot.

There will be a selection of naughty puddings including Mississippi mud pie, bread and butter pudding and French apple flan, which have also been compiled into a recipe book to be sold on the night.

A range of stallholders will also be demonstrating favourite pastimes such as cake decorating, glass painting and card making.

The event starts at 7.30pm and tickets can be purchased on the door for £6, which includes a glass of wine.

Amy suffers from a rare variation of the Emery-Dreifuss type of muscular dystrophy.

The Amy Louise Appeal Fund was established in June 2002 with the aim of funding treatment to manage her symptoms and to provide vital special equipment.

To make a donation to the fund or for further information on forthcoming fundraising events, visit the website at

Or write to the Amy Louise Appeal Fund, PO Box 7809, Crowthorne, Berks RG45 6ZN.