“He’s an absolute angel – my favourite person in the world and the best thing in my life” – brave Yafa completes a 45-foot abseil to raise funds and thank EACH for the care it provides for brother Abed

A daredevil teenager scaled the heights to thank the charity that helps puts a smile on her brother’s face.

Yafa Arabi, 14, completed a 45-foot abseil down The Forum – one of Norwich’s most iconic buildings – and raised more than £1,000 for East Anglia’s Children’s Hospices (EACH).

She took on the challenge as EACH provides care for brother Abed, at The Treehouse, in Ipswich.

The ten-year-old’s condition has not been diagnosed but he has a range of complex needs, including the fact he cannot walk or talk.

He feeds through a PEG (percutaneous endoscopic gastrostomy) tube and depends on round-the-clock support from parents Jalal and Rita.

As a way of showing her appreciation, Yafa, who lives in Bacton, near Stowmarket, completed the abseil on Sunday, 24th March.

After setting herself a target of £100, the student at Hartismere School, in Eye, has so far raised £1,088.

“I’d describe it as terrifying but fulfilling,” she said.

“I was most anxious in the moments before I started coming down.

“That was the worst bit but when I was underway I quite enjoyed it.

“By the time I got to the bottom, I was ready to do it again!

“I’m proud of myself for having the courage to do it and also grateful to everyone who supported and encouraged me by donating.

“I wouldn’t have been able to do it otherwise.”

Yafa says Abed, who attends Thomas Wolsey Ormiston Academy, in Ipswich, loves spending time at The Treehouse.

“I can’t express how kind everyone is,” she said.

“The staff have helped and offered such amazing support, which I know they also do for so many other people.

“EACH has helped us find activities and opportunities we can do together.

“Abed enjoys music therapy, the sensory room and being in the pool for hydrotherapy. It’s the perfect mix.

“The Treehouse is somewhere he feels included and it’s about focusing on the things he can do, rather than the things he can’t.

“Just because he has a disability, he should still be able to enjoy life.”

Yafa says she loves her brother’s smiling face and describes him as ‘joyful, empathetic and carefree’.

“He embraces everything, doesn’t let anything hold him back and loves laughing,” she said.

“He’s got a great sense of humour and always makes me laugh.

“He’s also a very kind person, easy to be around and makes people feel better.

“He’s an absolute angel – my favourite person in the world and the best thing in my life.”

Yafa and Abed’s parents – Jalal is a dentist and Rita a doctor – both hail from Palestine.

They nervously watched on as their daughter completed the abseil, along with Yafa’s nan, Hilary.

Rita said: “I feel so proud of my children and blessed by the love they have for each other.

“Yafa is the one person who can always make Abed smile, even if he’s in pain or uncomfortable. She never fails to make him laugh.”

There is still time to sponsor Yafa by heading here.

The Norwich abseil was open to adults and children aged 14 and over. Seventy people took part and raised more than £18,200 for EACH.

“We were delighted to raise so much and hope those that took part felt rightly proud of themselves,” said EACH Senior Events Fundraiser Emma Cook.

“They conquered their fears to do something special and we’re extremely grateful, as we are to those who made donations and showed such outstanding support.”

Howard Adventure Hire ran the abseil and the event was sponsored by Tuff Stuff Workwear.

Pictures: Glenn Hands/EACH

Find our notes to editors here.

Keep in touch:

For further information about this release please contact:

Matt Plummer | Media and PR Manager | 07738 328058 | Matt.Plummer@each.org.uk

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