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Amelia is three and a half and has a rare form of epilepsy and a hole in heart – it means that she can stop breathing up to 15 times a day. Her family live in constant fear and her condition means that she can never be left alone.

Amelia’s mum, Marina, explains: “I can’t even go to the toilet on my own as I’m always scared that Amelia may stop breathing and I won’t be there to help her.”

When Amelia stops breathing, Marina gives her life-saving first aid by stimulating her chest; she also closes her eyes in case a second episode comes on, if they’re not within easy reach of a hospital. Amelia is also very scared of busy environments and noise – she gets upset and overwhelmed in busy, public places. However, at Circus Starr she’s never scared.

Marina adds: “It can be really difficult for Amelia’s siblings – they seem to have missed out on a lot of family time. Our last day out didn’t even last an hour because of Amelia’s poor health – we had to turn around and come home. They do understand but I feel sorry that they’ve missed out on things that we really can’t do together.

Circus Starr is so special to us: Amelia talks about the show every single day – it’s such a massive part of our family’s memories. We have never felt as relaxed and comfortable as we do in the big top’s safe and friendly environment.

Amelia leaves the shows so happy. It is so nice for us to have no worries while we are there. My two older children really enjoy it too because the show has something for everyone. We never feel judged, even though it looks like we’re moving house with the number of things we need for Amelia when we go out. We don’t get any respite and sometimes feel so cut off from the world so I really enjoy and love our time at the Circus.

On show days Amelia is so excited she’s dressed and ready to go by 6:30am! She’s a huge fan of Chico Rico the clown – his potato juggling has had such an impact, she insists on taking a potato to bed to cuddle!”

We are delighted that our shows make such a big impact on entire families and allow them to have fun together.

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