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The provision of a specialist bed means an eight-year-old Lincolnshire boy will no longer have to sleep on a mattress on the floor.

Douglas Carmouche, from Harmston, has been diagnosed with autism and has limited awareness of danger.

The youngster is very sensory seeking, is fascinated by water and also really enjoys bouncing.

Douglas often wakes in the night and will jump on his bed to satisfy his sensory needs. However, the brave little boy has broken his last four beds and is currently sleeping on a mattress on the floor.

In desperation his mum Debbie has turned to leading charity Newlife Foundation for help with the charity fast tracking an application for a £785 Tough Bed.

Debbie said: “Douglas has autism and is at the severe end of the spectrum and is extremely sensory sensitive.

“He absolutely loves bouncing and loves trampolines but he also loves to bounce on his bed which has caused us lots of problems.

“I have tried different types of bed but he has broken the last four and now either shares my bed or sleeps on a mattress on the floor which is far from ideal.

“His sleep pattern is all over the place so we desperately need a bed that is extremely tough.”

Debbie said as well as keeping Douglas safe, the Tough Bed should also ensure a better night’s sleep for both her and Douglas’ sister Lucy.

She said: “The bed we have asked for was recommended to us at a show we went to about autism and will be perfect.

“Douglas often can’t sleep properly and regularly wakes in the night and either bounces or tries to take his bed apart.

“Some nights I would go in and he would be sat on his bed with parts of it around him and I would have to piece it back together before settling him down again.

“The new bed will be much more comfortable and secure for Douglas, and should also ensure a better night’s sleep for both Lucy and I which will make a huge difference.”

The new bed will be delivered once it has been made in about five weeks’ time.

Debbie turned to Newlife after exploring funding for a Tough Bed through statutory services and being made aware funds were not available.

Newlife has previously funded 73 pieces of specialist equipment for disabled and terminally ill children in Lincolnshire costing £84,257.

However, a recent surge in demand for services has prompted Newlife to call for ‘local heroes’ to come forward to fundraise or donate towards the cost of specialist equipment for children in the county.

The charity is currently working with two other families in Lincolnshire who need equipment costing £5,829.

Newlife CEO Sheila Brown, OBE, said: “As cutbacks continue to bite into local authority budgets we can expect to see applications for Newlife equipment services continue to rise.

“As a charity we are looking increasingly to ‘local heroes’ to help us buy equipment that really will change the life of a disabled or terminally ill child.

“Newlife guarantees that 100 per cent of all monies donated or fundraised in Lincolnshire can be ring-fenced to specifically provide equipment for disabled and terminally ill children within the region.”

If you would like to raise money to help disabled and terminally ill children, the Newlife Community Fundraising Team can be contacted on freephone 0800 988 4640. Any individual or organisation thinking of running a fundraising event is asked to contact the team, who can offer support and guidance.

Pictured: Douglas Carmouche.

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