‘The chair has changed his life’ - Quadriplegic Tranent boy gets unique p-pod chair through charity grant

When Rocco Wood was born three months premature he weighed less than a bag of sugar.

By Shona Elliot
Wednesday, 26th June 2019, 7:40 pm
Rocco Wood in his p-pod chair
Rocco Wood in his p-pod chair

He also had quadriplegic cerebral palsy which means that he can’t walk, talk or sit unaided.

Rocco’s mother Louise Wood, from Tranent, East Lothian, realised that Rocco’s life would be tough but vowed that she would do all she could to make sure it was about opportunities, not obstacles.

Seeing Rocco now, a bright-eyed ten-year-old who weighs in at a healthy five stone, it’s clear that Louise is doing just that.

Rocco is a happy and sociable child who loves to be around people.

He enjoys painting, baking, playing with switch-adapted toys, and he especially enjoys watching cartoons.

However, Rocco had nothing comfortable or suitable for sitting on after a busy day at school or at weekends.

The NHS only funds outdoor wheelchairs which can be uncomfortable to sit in for prolonged periods of time at home.

After many failed attempts to find a solution, Louise came across the P-Pod: a beanbag that offers positioning support for children and young adults. It’s also mobile and has a tray for toys and more!

But coming in at £1,500, the chair simply cost too much for Louise. Although she’d found the ideal solution, she couldn’t afford it.

Then she heard about Ecas, an Edinburgh based charity, set up to support those with a physical disability.

Ecas’ Grants Fund offers a diverse range of grants to help improve the lives of physically disabled people.

Ecas has been operating for over 100 years and has helped transform the lives of physically-disabled people all over Edinburgh and the Lothians in that time.

Through the best of Ecas’s grant Louise was able to purchase the p-pod for Rocco and their family life has been completely transformed.

Rocco can now sit comfortably in the family’s sitting room after school and play or watch TV without Louise having to worry.

She said: ”Before the chair Rocco had to sit in his wheelchair until bedtime or go straight to bed after he got back from school, and lie on the floor on a mat over the weekend.

“The chair has changed his life, and ours as a family.

“He can be in a comfy seat in the living room with the rest of the family, and do the things he loves at the weekend.

“Ecas has made such a difference to Rocco’s quality of life and I am forever grateful for that.”

Ecas chief executive Ally Irvine said: “Ecas’ Grants Fund was set up to assist people of all ages with increased costs associated with a physical disability.

“We are delighted to have helped with the purchase of specialist equipment, white goods, electronic goods, UK holidays, help with student fees, and much more.”

Ecas Grants have benefited many physically disabled people in Edinburgh over the last 100 years.

Some, like Rocco, have been able to buy life changing specialist equipment otherwise unattainable while others have received help with tuition fees and therapy sessions.