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Tianna...she's a joy to be around and her bravery each day an inspiration; COMMUNITY CHAMPION The People's Awards sponsored by BARCLAYS NORTHUMBRIAN WATER.

Byline: By ANGELA RAINEY

LOSING one's hair is enough to damage anyone's confidence but not tough Tianna Porritt.

The 11-year-old, pictured right, has battled with Alopecia Aorta Totalis for three years with such bravery that she has been nominated as a Community Champion Child of Courage.

Proud parents Tracey and Craig say they were devastated when Tianna's long blonde hair started to fall out in clumps but are very impressed with her courage in not letting it get her down.

Mother-of-three Mrs Porritt said: "We were devastated when she suddenly began to lose her gorgeous long hair for no apparent reason.

"The day before her ninth birthday she awoke to find her eyebrows and eyelashes had fallen out overnight.

"But despite this huge challenge Tianna has never let it get her down, hold her back or affect her very bubbly kind nature.

"Tianna is a joy to be around and her bravery every day is an inspiration."

Last month friends and family of Tianna stripped to their bikinis and washed cars to raise pounds 2,000 for a new blonde human hair wig. Firemen who work with her dad also helped out.

And Tianna was delighted to have received her new blonde wig in time for starting her first year at Macmillan Academy.

She has also been able to meet other youngsters with the condition by attending a support group for the first time.

Mrs Porritt added: "We are so proud of her every day - she is a lesson and inspiration to all. We love our gorgeous beautiful girl and we are not alone.

"Please let us show her how much we love her by making her the winner in the Community Champions award contest.

"She is the bravest of the brave and our community is blessed and richer for her presence."

The Champion Child of Courage award is sponsored by Northumbrian Water.

To see a video report of the girls doing the sponsored car wash for Tianna visit gazettelive.co.uk

To enter...

EVENING Gazette Community Champions aim to recognise Teesside's unsung heroes.

For details of the categories and how to enter along with a nomination form log onto www.gazettelive.co.uk/communitychampions, or contact Debbie Wilde, Event Executive on 0191 2016393 or email debbie.wilde@ncjmedia.co.uk Closing date for applications is September 26 2008.
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Publication:Evening Gazette (Middlesbrough, England)
Date:Sep 18, 2008
Words:389
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