“My daughter Millie-Mae was only three years old when she saved my life,” says proud mummy Cara Channer.
“I’d been poorly for a few days, and was struggling on my own with two young children at home. I’d managed to get downstairs and make breakfast for Millie-Mae and her brother Mason, and then lay down on the sofa.
“At some point, I got up to get something for one of the children and then I don’t remember anything else, it all went black.”
Cara, aged 27, collapsed on the floor of her Stannington home, leaving Millie-Mae alone with her little brother, one-year-old Mason. After trying, and failing to wake her mummy, Millie-Mae grabbed Cara's phone and ran out of the house to the family’s next door neighbour where she banged on the door. When Cara’s neighour, Alex, answered the door, Millie-Mae thrust the phone at her, and told her ‘mummy’s fallen and I can't wake her up.’
“The next thing I knew, I was with the ambulance crew, who told me my blood pressure was really low,” says Cara.
“I was taken to hospital where they began doing tests and found that I was suffering from gastroenteritis and was severely dehydrated. I live alone with the kids and my condition could have been really serious if I’d just laid there without help. I’m so proud of Millie-Mae’s quick-thinking.”
Cara had to stay in hospital for a couple of days, while her vitals and hydration levels stabilised. She says she is still amazed that her daughter, who is now four, knew what to do.
“Millie-Mae’s been at Stannington Village Pre-School since she was two, and she’s a really bright little girl,” she says.
“When I took her back to pre-school, after all this had happened, and told them what she’d done, they were delighted. It turns out they regularly hold sessions with the kids to teach them what to do and when, and even have phones in the classroom they can show them how to call 999 on. I think they were thrilled to hear that the information they’ve been putting out in class is resonating with the children.
“I think it’s so important that parents, and school-settings, work with children to make sure they understand what to do if something happens to a parent when they're home alone with them. My story could have ended very differently if it wasn’t for Millie-Mae raising the alarm.
“It was while reading about City Buzz’s new Time to Shine segment that I decided to get in touch, because Millie-Mae is my hero - and she definitely deserves her time to shine.”