Life has been an up-and-down journey for four-year-old Kelso girl Tahlia Healy. She suffers from a rare neurological disorder called lissencephaly, which causes parts of the surface of her brain to appear smooth rather than having curves and wrinkles. The condition severely restricts her mobility along with affecting various other parts of her life.

However, things are looking up for the family thanks to Pickerings Auto Group and help from generous Townsville Rotarians, Kia Motors Australia, the NDIS and various other businesses and members of the Townsville community.

Because of her condition, doctors say that Tahlia will never be able to crawl, walk, talk, or feed herself, and she suffers multiple seizures per day. Mum Cassandra Lau takes care of her daughter full-time, solely relying on a carer’s pension for support.

The need for a disability-modified vehicle has been there for a while, but lately it has become a struggle for Cassandra to lift her daughter in and out of the family car, leaving her fearing that one day she would no longer be able to do so. She desperately needed a vehicle with a fitted wheelchair lift to easily get Tahlia in and out of the car.

Well, recently this dream came true thanks to support from the community and Pickerings Auto Group, together investing over $80,000 towards a new vehicle for Cassandra and Tahlia. Pickerings has been known in the Townsville community over the past 40 years, and in that time have supported a number of community projects alongside this one. Their wish was granted when they were presented with a brand-new Kia Carnival Wagon, fully converted by Freedom Motors for Tahlia’s wheelchair access.

Pickerings Auto Group was the first corporate partner to offer support, followed by Kia Motors Australia significantly discounting the cost of the Kia Carnival. The NDIS funded the wheelchair lift conversion. Because of this, there is no need for Cassandra to lift her daughter into the car anymore; she can simply wheel Tahlia up the ramp and secure her safely in the vehicle and go on their way. The family can now easily and safely enjoy going on drives together.

The back of the Carnival is spacious and the vehicle has been given the highest ANCAP safety rating, ensuring the family are in good hands at all times on the road.

Pickerings Auto Group are proud to support Cassandra, Tahlia and the Townsville Rotarians in ‘Project Tahlia’, and they feel thrilled to be able to help make life a little easier for this wonderful local family.

If you’re after a new vehicle for your family or would like to check out the Kia Carnival for yourself, head on down to Pickerings Auto Group where they’ll be happy to assist you.


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