“Battling for equipment and support is something many families of children with disabilities or terminal illness knows all too well” – Stephen Morgan, Newlife Foundation Main Head of Operations.
Families with children who have disabilities or terminal illness across the UK are battling to get the essential equipment they need for everyday life, often having to wait for 12 months or more for help from statutory services who have had their own budgets slashed because of austerity measures.
Newlife believes that it doesn’t have to be that way. Together we can make life better for children with disabilities and terminal illness.
Equipment can change children’s lives, it can keep them safe, relieve pain, help them to be more independent and overcome challenges. For instance, you could help a child be discharged from hospital, take their first steps or kick a football with their friends.
Ezekiel Hemmingway from Croydon in Greater London is just one of many children in the UK who currently needs help so he can have a portable hoist, costing £1,607.
Ezekiel has Epilepsy, Autism and Quadriplegic Cerebral Palsy which means he can’t move on his own. He has also developed a curvature of the spine, for which surgery is being planned. Although the 15-year-old has a hoist system at home, he is now quite tall, making it difficult for his 5ft 3 inch mum Susan to manoeuvre him when they are away from home.
This means little things which most people take for granted just aren’t possible for Ezekiel and his family, such as a trip the supermarket, a meal out with friends or popping in to see family, let alone a holiday. A portable hoist would change all this and allow her to move her son in a way which is safe for both of them.
However, when Susan enquired about a portable hoist she was informed there was no funding available by her local statutory services.
“Ezekiel is a lovely child but he gets frustrated when we try to lift him from a chair to the floor and because I’m a lot shorter it’s very difficult. Having a portable hoist wouldn’t solve everything, but it would make life a lot easier for us and it means we could do more. I’m exhausted from lifting him so if we do manage to go on holiday it would mean I could actually enjoy myself too.”
Newlife Foundation for Disabled Children is the UK’s largest charity provider of children’s specialist disability equipment, funding £827,512 of grants in Greater London – ranging from powered wheelchairs to special beds, but we need your help to continue to do this so we can help children like Ezekiel. That’s why the charity launched the Newlife Greater London fund –www.newlifecharity.co.uk/greaterlondon.
A simple click on the ‘Donate’ button at www.newlifecharity.co.uk/greaterlondon is all it takes to help ease a child’s pain, keep them safe or prevent their condition worsening, but if you would like to become more involved there are plenty of ways you can raise vital funds – and Newlife guarantees 100% of any donation or fundraising will be used to help children in your county.
Stephen Morgan, Newlife Foundation Main Head of Operations said: “We want to ensure no child has to go without the equipment they need to make their life better; no child should suffer because of a lack of equipment – but to achieve this we need your help. Newlife has seen a 25 per cent increase in applications this year compared to last year and has no budget at this time to help meet the needs of 36 currently waiting in Greater London – but you could help us change that.”
Pictured: Ezekiel Hemmingway