Girl, 15, moves in to help great-grandmother in lockdown

A 15-year-old who has moved in with her 90-year-old great-grandmother to care for her during the lockdown has made her family beam with pride, her mother said.

Joanna Murray has picked up cooking and cleaning skills during the seven weeks looking after Mary Murray, who lives close to Joanna’s parents in Marsden, South Shields, South Tyneside.

The teenager was staying with her great-grandmother before lockdown to keep her company and once it was announced, she returned home and packed a bag of clothes.

Her mother Diane, 39, said: “I am absolutely beaming that she has done this.

“She told me that my nana needed her more than we did.

“My nana has carers coming in every day and Joanna does some cooking, cleaning, washing and shopping.

“Joanna is selfless, she is putting other people before her own needs.

“She’s coping really well with it.

“They had a close bond before, now it’s unbreakable.

“If I joke and say to my nana, ‘How can she do all this for you and yet she doesn’t do anything at home?’, she says ‘Don’t you talk about Joanna like that, she’s my princess’.”

Joanna, who goes to school in Gateshead, said she decided to help out because her great-grandmother needed her.

“I thought it would be a good way to get a better bond,” she said.

“When I first started it was stressful, but now I have got my routine.

“It has been amazing and I love hearing all the stories from the past, from when she was little. We spend most days talking about that.

“I am missing my friends, but I wouldn’t be able to see them anyway.”

She keeps in touch with her family via social media and they wave at each other through the window.

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