This week, we’d like to help a 7 year old boy from Leeds called Leon.
Just after his second birthday, Leon was diagnosed with multi suture craniosynostosis. It is a condition where the joints in a baby’s skull fuse too early, which causes problems with brain growth and head shape. He had surgery to rebuild his skull when he was 3, and when he was 4 he was diagnosed with epilepsy. He has seizures day and night. Leon also has autism, sensory issues and is delayed in his development. He has been in and out of hospital for his entire life.
Leon was home-schooled until January of this year, when he joined the same primary school as 2 of his sisters. He now attends 3 days a week with full support, which is an incredible achievement for him.
Leon uses a wheelchair when he is out and about, and is about to be fitted for a protective helmet due to his seizures. His mum, Sam, said: “Even with all of his 'issues,' he is an adorable little boy. He never complains and everyone who meets him loves him.”
Sam is his full-time carer, but on top of caring for Leon and his siblings, she has her own challenges to face. Sam had a spinal chord injury and had surgery last year. It has left her with very little feeling in her hands and weakness down her left side. So Leon’s dad, Mark, juggles work, school runs and helping to care for Leon and his brothers and sisters.
They live in a council home which they would desperately love to renovate. Leon currently sleeps in his parent’s room, as at the moment it is the safest place for him to be. But they would like him to start sharing a bedroom with his big brother. As it is, the room wouldn’t be safe for Leon. The room needs redecorating, custom bunk beds built (no sharp corners, low to the floor), blinds for the windows, fitted wardrobes to make optimum use of the small space, and some toy storage. Mark has the skills and determination to do the work himself, but they don’t have the extra money to buy the materials they need.
“We just want Leon to feel like he has some independence, while also keeping him safe. We need to do it in a way that his older brother doesn’t feel like he is in a little boy’s room. We know we can do it, we just don’t have the funds to get started!” Sam said.
The boys’ birthdays are early next year, and they would love to get the work finished by then. With your help, we would like to help give Leon and his big brother their new bedroom.