The mother of a two-year-old who suffers from a debilitating brain condition has put out a heartfelt appeal for funding towards a specialist chair to help him recover from illness.
Benjamin Davey, who suffers from a condition called microlissencephaly, meaning his brain has failed to develop normally, requires a special “P-Pod chair” costing almost £1000.
The toddler, from Dunbar, also suffers from cerebral palsy, epilepsy and visual impairment and needs postural support at all times.
And mum Alex is determined to raise the £972 needed to pay for the chair which she claims will allow the tot to spend more time with his two sisters.
“Benjamin can’t relax on the sofa like the rest of the family, he would just fall off,” she said.
“He has high muscle tone and he tends to arch his back so his hips pop forward.
“The P-Pod offers all the support he needs, but is padded for comfort and has a five-point harness to keep him secure.
“At the moment he is kind of isolated, he’s either upstairs in his bed or he’s through in the kitchen which isn’t particularly safe because I constantly have to run run back and forward to check on him.
“Getting the P-Pod would basically just mean he could experience a normal family life which is what we are trying to give him.”
Alex, 37, has already been able to raise £324 thanks to Newlife Foundation for Disabled Children, however more than £600 is still required to purchase the chair.
It was a trip to the local hospice which convinced Alex, a botanist, that a chair would allow Benjamin the freedom to be part of the family.
“When we go to our local hospice we see a lot of children in P-Pods and they always look more comfortable than Benjamin,” she said.
“This seating would not only mean he could actually spend more time with the family in the lounge, but have more interaction with his sisters than he is restricted to just now.”
The family currently have a rigid, multi-functional chair stationed in the kitchen which Benjamin can sit in unsupported.
However, as Alex says, the medical benefits of having the P-Pod are significant.
“Benjamin has had recurrent bouts of pancreatitis over the summer, as well as chickenpox which completely floored him,” she said.
“In the same period he has also had three respiratory infections and required intravenous feeds, oxygen and a blood transfusion.
“It’s quite tiring for him to have to recover from all of that, we need something to help him relax and heal after going through that process.”
Donations can be made online at www.newlifecharity.co.uk/eastlothian.