Lorde donates $10k to 'humbled' Kiwi family

Lorde (Reuters)
Lorde (Reuters)

A Titirangi family has been stunned after pop singer Lorde - real name Ella Yelich-O'Connor - donated $10,000 to their Givealittle page.

Devora Busch and Richard Barry's family created the page after they were struck with the costs of repairing a leaky home, while raising their autistic daughter.

Rheegan, aged 10, is severely autistic, and also suffers from pica - a condition which means she will eat anything, including nappies, napkins, and Pink Batts.

To make things worse, Mr Barry has had to leave his teaching job because of severe hearing impairment and health difficulties.

The Givealittle page attracted one famous donor.

"Sending best wishes and love to you and your parents, Rhee. Xxxx," Lorde wrote next to her $10,000 donation.

The page says the family "cannot meet the expense their leaky home is burdening them with in addition to the high costs of raising and caring for Rhee, who is in the top few percent of New Zealand's high-needs children.

"They must shift the family out of their house for at least four months when it is being reclad to the tune of $260,000. While they may recover up to half that money through a government subsidy they will also have rental, moving and storage costs to pile on top of their already high mortgage.  Not to mention what it will cost them to modify the rental to keep Rhee safe. All up, they expect to be out of pocket at least $160,000."

Lorde's gift has left the family shocked.

"I was going to pick up my daughter from school and my mum text me and said 'Have you checked out your Givealittle?'" Ms Busch says.

"I looked and found out Lorde had donated $10,000."

Ms Busch says she's a fan of Ella's music.

"Who wouldn't be, I think she's young and zesty," she says. "She's a strong and empowered young woman!"

The family are thankful for all the support they have received from the public. So far, $66,531.10 has been donated.

"It's enormous, every donation, whether it be big or small has been awe-inspiring and humbling," Ms Busch says.

"To be moved by our plight, I find it phenomenal that people have the time and the care to lend us a helping hand.

"When we get through this we'd liked to be there for other people."

And Ms Busch has a final message for Lorde.

"What a kind and gracious woman she is to just look for people," she says.

"I just want to say that I'm just inspired and humbled by your utter generosity."