A family has launched an appeal to raise £15,000 for a sensory room to help their 13-month-old son who has cerebral palsy.
Elaine Anderson, 28, and her fiance Jamie Smith, 26, were devastated when their son Dayton-James was diagnosed with cerebral palsy, which is a neurological condition which affects a child’s movement and co-ordination, at just 10-months-old. The youngster may never walk and suffers from regular spasms but Elaine said in spite of it all, Dayton is a “content and happy little boy”.
The couple, who live in Billingborough, have launched a campaign called Dayton’s Dream with the aim of raising £15,000 over the next three years. The money will go towards setting up a sensory room at their home and buying physiotherapy equipment and a specialist hot tub to help Dayton’s muscles develop.
Dayton was born at 28 weeks on September 26 last year. He was in intensive care for more than seven weeks due to problems with his oxygen levels but following a blood transfusion, he seemed to improve and went home on November 15, 2012.
But a few days later, it became apparent that Dayton was still having problems as he would stop breathing while having his bottle. He was rushed to hospital when he turned blue and went floppy in his mother’s arms. Doctors diagnosed a reflux condition and Dayton was only diagnosed with cerebral palsy at 10-months-old when paeditricians realised he was not developing as he should and had not sat up, rolled or held his bottle.
Elaine said: “It was a huge shock and we were all crying when we were told.
“It is a lot to take in and it can be difficult at times.
“We were told he might never walk and he will be on medication for the rest of life. He has spasms a lot as well. He has a special chair that he uses when eating and a physiotherapy chair to do activities with him.”
Elaine is also mum to Owen, nine, Angel, seven, and Ruby-Mae, three, while Jamie is father to five-year-old Lola-Rose. Elaine said the other children just treat Dayton like their little brother.
Dayton attends a special school in Sleaford, where he has access to a sensory room, and Elaine said it makes a huge difference to his life.
She said: “He absolutely loves playing with all the equipment and looking at the lights.
“He giggles a lot there and it is just amazing to see his big smile. It makes such a difference to him and it would be amazing to have a sensory room for him at home. We really need people’s help with this. Any fundraising activities to help Dayton, however small, will help.”
Jamie had to give up his job to become a full-time carer to Dayton, while Elaine is job hunting. They also hope to be able to move to a specially-adapted home as they struggle to carry Dayton due to his spasms.
So far, the coupe, who have family living in Stamford, have raised £300 towards the Dayton’s Dream campaign through donations.
They are also planning sponsored events, including skydives, and have run charity auctions on Facebook using donated items.
To find out more about how you can get involved visit https://www.facebook.com/pages/Daytons-Dream/ 492102537574273? fref=ts or to donate to the cause visit www.justgiving.com/Daytons- dream.