A simple piece of specialist equipment has helped take the stress out of the daily school run for Winchester mum Diletta Baldino.
Diletta now has a special-needs buggy to keep her three-year-old daughter Isabelle safe and comfortable while she takes her son, aged four, to school.
Isabelle Budd has a complex condition including developmental delay, hyper-mobile joints, anaemia and a sleep disorder. She has orthopaedic boots to help her walk but often falls over. Diletta said: “Isabelle is now too big for the average pushchair, but not only does she become tired easily and fall over she has no fear and will just wander – or run – off; she is very fast and the school run was becoming a daily struggle.”
She needed a buggy specially designed for older children and with extra safety straps – but the equipment best suited to Isabelle’s needs costs £679. On the advice of another parent at the children’s centre Isabelle attends, Diletta contacted Newlife the Charity for Disabled Children.
Newlife is the UK’s largest charity provider of specialist equipment for children with disabilities and terminal illness – and has helped 436 under-19s in Hampshire, with equipment totalling £649,169.
With the help of fabulous local fundraisers, the family recently took delivery of the equipment. Diletta said: “The buggy is working well for Isabelle; it reclines and her feet can be raised so when she gets tired she can sleep comfortably wherever we are. No more cut lips and grazed faces because she has fallen over.”
The buggy was provided through donations from staff fundraising events at the River Island fashion stores in Southampton and Fareham and a charity partnership between Newlife and utilities company TLI, which has offices in Basingstoke.
Newlife CEO Sheila Brown, OBE, added: “As local authority budget cuts continue to bite, more and more families are turning to charities like Newlife for specialist equipment which can have a significant effect on young lives. Anyone struggling to access equipment through their statutory services should call our Newlife Nurse Helpline – 0800 902 0095 (free from UK landlines and mobiles) to discuss their individual situation.”
If you think you could help a local child, go to www.newlifecharity.co.uk/hampshire for further details. Alternatively, contact the Newlife County Liaison Team on 01543 431 444, email [email protected] Newlife guarantees that 100 per cent of monies donated or fundraised in Hampshire will be used to specifically help local children with disabilities and terminal illness.