Fundraising is underway for a teenage girl battling a brain infection in Wellington Hospital.

Students at Whanganui Girls' College have held a beach-themed fundraiser for fellow student Alice Giltrap.

The 17-year-old was recovering in Wellington Hospital following a battle with a severe brain infection - believed to be encephalitis of the brain.

Giltrap has been talking, smiling and moving the right side of her body, but faces an extensive rehabilitation process to regain movement in her left side.

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Her friends at the school on Jones St became aware of the situation through a Givealittle page created by family friend Christina Ivar.

Friends of Alice, Michaela Davey, Jennifer Churchouse and Jasmine Nahora have worked hard to raise funds for her recovery. Photo / Stuart Munro
Friends of Alice, Michaela Davey, Jennifer Churchouse and Jasmine Nahora have worked hard to raise funds for her recovery. Photo / Stuart Munro

"As soon as we found out we went to the teachers and asked them what we could do to help Alice out," head girl Jennifer Churchouse said.

"She likes the beach, so we went with this theme and that's why we're here dressed like this today."

Funds are being raised for Alice, her dad Bevan Giltrap and her mum Maree Dowdle through mufti donations, a cake raffle and sausage and cupcake sales.

"We had an assembly on Tuesday, I had to come in and make everyone aware of the situation because a lot of girls didn't know about it," Churchouse said.

"The whole room was just dead quiet, she's a really lovely girl and it was so sad to hear about her."

Giltrap was originally taken to Whanganui Hospital last Monday with suspected glandular fever. Within half an hour she had stopped breathing and was revived by staff.

Bevan and Maree were told their girl wouldn't make it before she was flown to Wellington, where a piece of her skull was removed to reduce the swelling of her brain.

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She beat the odds and is expected to arrive back at Whanganui Hospital tomorrow.

"She'll be so welcomed when she comes back," Churchouse said.

"Because of her situation, she won't be at graduation with us and she was really excited about that because it's something we pride ourselves on, getting to Year 13.

"The school said one of her parents can come along, so I think her father is going to come on her behalf."

Giltrap will have to return to Wellington when the swelling on her brain has subsided enough for surgeons to close up her skull.

You can donate funds towards Alice's recovery at: https://givealittle.co.nz/cause/alices-fight-for-life