A BURSARY fund has been set up to honour the memory of a 20-year-old who died of anorexia.
Lindsay Weddell, who began to struggle with depression and obsessive compulsive disorder as a 14-year-old before she developed the eating disorder, died after being shunted between nine hospitals in Scotland and England in search of care.
Following her death in 2004, the Scottish Government Ombudsman ruled that the Currie youngster had been failed by NHS Lothian and other health boards.
Since then, the BEAT charity to support people with eating disorders has been launched and a £500,000 specialist unit has been opened at St John’s Hospital in Livingston to treat eating disorders.
Now the Butterfly Bursary, which will provide grants for education and research projects around eating conditions, has been set up by NHS Lothian and Lindsay’s mum, Louise.
The 52-year-old said the establishment of the bursary was an appropriate legacy for “vibrant and thoughtful” Lindsay.
“I’ve had to live with grief. But I don’t want to be bitter any more. I feel like the bursary gives me some kind of comfort. I don’t want anyone else to go through what she went through or what we went through,” she said.
“I chose purple butterflies [as the logo] because my daughter loved butterflies and they have a short life as well. Lilac was her favourite colour. I think it’s a fitting memorial. I would rather have her back, but I am comforted at the thought of helping other people.”
Louise hopes the bursary, which will provide ongoing funding annually, will spread awareness of anorexia and help develop the services that could have saved her daughter.
Grants of up to £3500 will be made, with the cash from NHS Lothian’s mental health and wellbeing strategy budget.
Louise said: “I have been fighting for changes, and a woman phoned me up and said her daughter’s life had been saved by the new place at St John’s, which is fantastic. It was lovely but it’s bittersweet because I know it wasn’t there for my daughter.”
n For more information on the Butterfly Bursary or an application form, e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org. The closing date for applications is February 28.