Young Florian Isherwood, from Nottingham, is travelling in safety, thanks to the generous listeners at BBC Radio 4.
TV presenter Jon Bentley was the voice of a BBC Radio 4 charity appeal in December (2015) on behalf of Newlife Foundation for Disabled Children – and now more than a dozen children across the UK, including Florian, are seeing the benefits. Newlife is the UK’s largest charity provider of specialist equipment for children with disabilities and terminal illness.
Jon Bentley – who presents Channel 5’s innovative The Gadget Show – is a Newlife supporter. He says: “I find it truly exceptional how Newlife offers invaluable free help which transforms the lives of children with disabilities and terminal illness and their families.”
Newlife National Head of Fundraising Michael Bolton added: “The weekly Radio 4 charity appeal regularly gets 2.3million listeners, and we were delighted to be chosen for this opportunity to let more people know what we do and how we do it. Thanks to the generosity of Radio 4 listeners who so kindly responded to our appeal, we are now providing specialist equipment for a number of children with disabilities and terminal illness around the UK.”
How Newlife is helping Florian . . .
Twenty-month-old Florian has Bohring Optiz Syndrome, a life-limiting condition which includes low muscle tone and reduced head control; in addition he is developing scoliosis, a curvature of the spine.
Due to his condition, Florian needs additional postural support at all times including while he is travelling. He had been using a standard car seat – bought before he was born – but as he has grown it became increasingly clear that he needs specialist support.
Mum Alice Isherwood said: “Florian’s occupational therapist recommended a specialist car seat with additional padding and a swivel base to help get him in and out with minimal handling. This is particularly important because Florian is fed through a tube in his stomach. Postural seating is also vital because Florian already has a small degree of scoliosis and the right support will help minimise further issues. We had been padding out his original baby seat with towels for added support – but this wasn’t a long-term solution.”
The new car seat, costing £437, will meet Florian’s needs for several years. Alice added: “Not only will it mean increased safety and comfort for Florian while travelling to hospital and clinic appointments, it will help him take part in more group activities and support him on longer journeys, like going on holiday.”
Newlife has helped provide £306,396 of equipment for 351 children with disabilities and terminal illness in Nottinghamshire. Right now, the charity is currently working with another 26 families in the county with equipment needs totalling £3,893.
To find out more about how Newlife supports families in Nottinghamshire go to: www.newlifecharity.co.uk/nottinghamshire. The website includes contact details for the Newlife County Liaison Team – tel no 01543 431 444 or email firstname.lastname@example.org – and shows specific ways people can help support children with disability and terminal illness and their families in the county.
Newlife guarantees that 100 per cent of monies donated or fundraised in Nottinghamshire will be used to specifically help children with disabilities and terminal illness in the county.
Pictured: Florian Isherwood