A DISABLED Sheffield youngster is hoping to enjoy the holiday of a lifetime as a children’s charity appeals for donations to send him on a special trip to America.
Oliver Rains, aged 10, from Gleadless Townend, suffers from the degenerative condition spinal muscular atrophy, which means he needs a wheelchair and has been admitted to hospital numerous times for infections.
Charity Caudwell Children is now asking for help to send Oliver on a magical holiday to Florida, where he will stay in a private villa and visit Disneyworld, Universal Studios and Seaworld, accompanied by parents Helen and David, doctors and paramedics.
Helen, aged 37, said the holiday would be ‘a dream come true’ but that the cost was too much to afford themselves.
“To be able to go on a holiday like this with a full medical team would be a dream come true,” she said.
“It would give us complete peace of mind that, should Oliver be poorly, there is someone on hand who knows what to do. The insurance for Oliver alone would make it impossible to afford as a family.”
She said Oliver is looking forward to jetting off to Florida, adding: “It would just be the chance of a lifetime.”
The Destination Dreams holiday will cost around £7,000, and Caudwell Children is asking charitable South Yorkshire folk to stage fundraisers and donate what they can to make sure Oliver goes on the trip.
Spinal muscular atrophy is a genetic condition which affects Oliver’s muscle tone, leaving him with the strength of a newborn baby. He has to have physiotherapy twice a day and suction after meals to clear his chest as he has a poor cough reflex.
The youngster, an avid Owls and speedway fan, is a Year 6 pupil at Birley Spa Primary and also spends time at Bluebell Wood Children’s Hospice. After school, he is cared for by Helen and David, 43, an alarm engineer, at their home on Ridgeway Road.
Oliver was born as a result of IVF treatment, and his parents became concerned when they realised he was not developing properly as a baby.
He was then diagnosed with the disease.
Anyone who wants to support the appeal should visit www.justgiving.com/destdreams or call 01782 600433.