Generous Falkirk Herald readers are continuing to contribute to a fund to help a minister’s badly injured niece.
The fund was set up in October to bring Farah Javed to Scotland for much-needed treatment after she was left paralysed by a terrorist bombing.
The 23-year-old is the niece of the Rev. Aftab Gohar, minister at Grangemouth’s Abbotsgrange Church. He lost his 79-year-old mother, niece, nephew and several relatives and friends in the attack on All Saints’ Church in Peshawar in September.
A total of 122 were killed and more than 170 injured.
Farah, a beauty therapy student, was among the most seriously hurt and remains in a government hospital in Pakistan, paralysed from the waist down.
Mr Gohar is desperate to bring her to this country where he is convinced she will get the rehabilitation to help her walk again.
He said: “There is no treatment for her in Peshawar and I don’t want to leave her in this state.”
First Minister Alex Salmond has stepped in to help cut through the red tape which is currently holding up Farah’s trip.
Her case was raised with him by Falkirk East MSP Angus MacDonald. He arranged for officials to contact Mr Gohar and he was able to speak to top neurosurgeon Eric Ballantyne, who has advised her family that the best course of action for Farah is to refer her to the national specialist spinal injuries service in Glasgow.
Negotiations are now underway with the Pakistan medical authorities.
In October, The Falkirk Herald launched an appeal to fund Farah’s expenses while she is in this country and already a considerable sum has been raised – from donations of £10 from individuals to over £10,000 raised at a dinner organised by 1333 (Grangemouth Spitfire) Squadron of which Mr Gohar is padre.
Contributions have come not just from the Falkirk and Grangemouth area, but across Central Scotland, many from church congregations.
To donate, send cheques, made out to ‘Appeal Fund for Falkirk Herald’, to our office at Unit 4A, Gateway Business Park, Beancross Road, Grangemouth FK3 8WX. These can also be handed in to our office in Manor Street, Falkirk FK1 1NH.
If anyone is organising an event in aid of the fund, contact us by phoning (01324) 690243 or e-mailing firstname.lastname@example.org.