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When little Tzvi Dafner was three months old he caught ‘flu and ended up having a cardiac arrest; a reduced supply of oxygen resulted in a brain injury which has affected his mobility and development.

Tzvi, from Prestwich, has low muscle tone and needs to be posturally supported to maximise movement potential. He uses a specialist seat at home, but his special needs nursery didn’t have the equipment he needed. Mum Sarah Dafner said: “If he’s not sitting properly he isn’t able to use his hands. He was sitting at nursery in a high chair, just lying back, slumped to one side, with his arms at his sides. He is able to play when he’s on the floor, but he was missing out on so much.”

The nursery’s physiotherapist recommended a specialist chair for two-year-old Tzvi, but local statutory services were unable to provide this at the time. Which prompted the Dafner family to turn to Newlife charity for help. Newlife is the UK’s largest charity provider of specialist equipment for children with disabilities and terminal illness.

A few days later the seating was delivered, and now Tzvi is able to join in more activities – even though he is currently in a brace to help improve hip alignment. Sarah added: “Now he is properly supported he is able to play with toys and use his hands more generally.”

Newlife has supported 451 children with disabilities and terminal illness across the Greater Manchester area with equipment totalling £368,424, through a range of services. Equipment Grants fund permanent provision; Emergency Equipment Loans support children with unstable, life-threatening or life-limiting illness and those who face injury due to the absence of appropriate equipment; Play Therapy Pods offer loans of sensory toys which aid development; Comfort Capsules help families of terminally ill children make memories.

Right now, Newlife is working a further 27 families in Greater Manchester with equipment needs totalling £31,152. To find out how you could help a child in the area, go to: Alternatively, call the Newlife County Liaison Team – tel no 01543 431 444 – or email

Pictured: Tzvi Dafner