Having just celebrated his third birthday, Jackson Craddock, from Wigmore in Luton, is a cheeky chap with a wicked sense of humour, but as he has Cerebral Palsy affecting both his arms and legs he is unable to do anything for himself, and as a result spends most of his time lying on a rug when he is at home. However, there is a specialist seat which would provide all the extra support he needs, while keeping him comfortable enough to relax and play.
A P-Pod is essentially a moulded seat on a beanbag base and is the ideal piece of equipment to give Jackson the postural support he needs while keeping him comfortable – however, as this would cost £917, mum Helen turned to Newlife the Charity for Disabled Children – the UK’s largest charity provider of specialist equipment for children with disabilities and terminal illness.
If you would like to help Jackson receive the P-Pod he needs, then go to www.newlifecharity.co.uk/bedfordshire and click on the Donate button next to his story. The charity is currently working with ten families in Bedfordshire with combined equipment needs of £7,748.
Jackson isn’t able to do the things his friends have mastered such as sit up, walk, feed himself and dress himself as the muscles throughout his body are too loose and floppy. As a result he needs a specialist buggy to get around and a walker and a standing frame to help him be upright, have a change of position and give him a little independence – but he has no seating and even being propped up on the sofa is too risky.
Mum Helen said: “If I’m not cradling Jackson in my arms then he has a rug on the floor as I have nothing else for him to sit in – which doesn’t feel right – but if I put him on the sofa he would roll off and he wouldn’t even be able to put his hands out to save himself. A P-Pod would be ideal, like a structured beanbag, with just the right amount of support.
“It takes both my arms to hold Jackson now as he is getting so big and lifting him from the floor so much has given me a bad back. As he gets bigger, this will only get worse, but having a P-Pod would mean I could safely put him in a seat to relax or while I went to fetch something or answer the door.
“Jackson was able to trial a P-Pod recently to make sure it was the right seat for him and he really enjoyed it. Because of the support it offers he was even able to use his hands to play – so he was not happy when it went away!”
Newlife guarantees that 100 per cent of monies donated or fundraised in Bedfordshire will be used to specifically help children with disabilities and terminal illness in the county. Any money raised above the requirements for Jackson will be used to help other local children.
Newlife is currently receiving more applications for help than at any time in its 25-year history, which is why public support is needed to support families caring for disabled and terminally ill children in Bedfordshire. The Newlife website includes contact details for the Newlife County Liaison Team – tel no 01543 431 444 or email [email protected] – and shows specific ways people can help support children with disability and terminal illness and their families in the county.
Pictured: Jackson Craddock