Newlife has launched an appeal to fund a specialist car seat for two-year-old Elijah after Covid left him with brain damage and needing 24-hour oxygen.
Elijah from Horsforth in Leeds tested positive for Covid in November 2021, but after having a temperature of 40.7 for several days he was put into an induced coma to save his life in Leeds Children’s Hospital.
Now Elijah has seizures, can’t speak and his lungs are so damaged he needs constant oxygen. He is fed through a tube, his muscles are too weak for him to sit upright for long periods of time and reflux causes him to vomit, risking him choking and breathing it into his lungs, potentially causing dangerous chest infections.
With multiple medical appointments each week, sometimes every day, Elijah and mum, Abigail, spend a lot of time in the car, but after a growth spurt his car seat isn’t safe – and a larger specialist car seat to meet all his needs costs £3,130 – far beyond the family budget.
As well as being safe for his height and weight, the specialist car seat can provide extra support for Elijah’s posture and a harness to keep him in a safe upright position. The car seat also swivels out so parents Abigail and Chris can easily lift him in and out, while three levels of adjustment mean he can recline or sit upright so he’s in the right position to meet his medical needs.
There is also more room for Elijah’s medical equipment, including tube feeds and oxygen, which will make journeys much easier for Elijah – and the whole family including 15-year-old Louise, three-year-old Jacob and three-month-old Nathan.
Mum Abigail said: “Having the right kind of car seat to safely meet Elijah’s needs is vital. As well as regular medical appointments he can become poorly suddenly, so we need to act fast and use the car to take him to hospital where we have open access, without worrying that his car seat isn’t safe enough.
“The car seat Elijah needs also has more room for things like his tube feeds and oxygen cylinders we need to take everywhere. Even if Elijah has a cold, we need to use a suction machine, as he can’t clear mucus himself, and this will be much easier to do in this car seat as it’s wider and the seat can be put into different positions.
“The car seat is also safe to use in the front of our car which means I will be able to see him when I’m driving and know he is safe – which will help my peace of mind.”
Abigail added: “We could also go places as a family again, so the children will no longer have to miss out. Just travelling to the beach for the day as a family is something we would love to do, knowing that the journey would be safe for Elijah.”
To donate to help fund the specialist car seat please visit
Always get the bill payer’s permission. Any money raised above the amount needed for Elijah specialist car seat will be used to help other disabled and terminally ill children in need.