A POOLE mother is collaborating with a national charity to help break the taboo of facial differences in children. 

Finley Ewen, 2, was born with lymphangioma, a non-cancerous fluid cyst formed in children, that's usually found on the head and neck.

In Finley’s case, this presents as swelling in the face that spreads to his airways.

He needs a tracheotomy to improve his quality of life.  

Finley’s mum Gemma Ewen, 39, reached out to Changing Faces once Finley turned two because he will soon be aware of reactions towards him.

Changing Faces is a charity dedicated to ‘providing support and promoting respect for everyone with a visible difference.’

In 2022, a total of £68,000 in donations was raised for Changing Faces to help provide support services such as counselling and skin camouflage.

She added: “Last Christmas, I felt so envious of other people on social media at home in their matching pyjamas or making posts with captions like ‘baby’s first Christmas’ when Finley was in the Paediatric Intensive Care Unit (PICU) on life support.

“It felt like everyone else had the perfect birth, perfect pregnancies, perfect babies.”

She continues: “To counteract these feelings, I started to flood my Instagram page with more content that was relevant to our situation.

“It’s how I discovered other people with lymphangioma, and Changing Faces.

"The charity was there for me when I needed their support the most.

“The workshop and online support group I attended were so helpful and I took away so much from both forms of support. I want others to know that help is available, and that you aren’t in this alone.”

Ellie Saltrick, head of fundraising at Changing Faces, said: “There are many families just like Gemma’s out there who need our support.

“By donating as part of the Big Give campaign, people can make double the impact, ensuring children and adults with visible differences across the UK feel seen and understood.”

Every donation made to Changing Faces’ Big Give campaign until December 5 will be doubled to allow more people to gain support from the charity.

Donations can be made on the Changing Faces website.