The family of a severely disabled boy who have been helped by their close-knit community are halfway to reaching a fundraising target that will help them make his life better.
Tracy and Steven Main, the parents of four-year-old Nathan, started a bid this summer to raise £40,000 to pay for adaptations and specialist equipment at their home in Ashington, Northumberland, for their son who was born with cerebral palsy.
Of this the family need to raise £13,000, with £27,000 being covered by a disabled facilities grant.
And already they have reached the halfway point of their target with £8,200 raised thanks to the unwavering support of the community in their hometown.
“This response has been totally amazing,” said Tracy, 40. “But more than the money itself, it has been the wide range of individuals and organisations that have become involved that has touched us so much,” added Tracy, who lives with husband Steven, a self employed joiner, Nathan and their other children, Paige, 19, and Chloe, 13, in Woodhorn Road, Ashington.
Nathan was born with cerebral palsy, which has left him unable to talk, walk or sit up and needing a feeding tube put into his stomach.
His family hope the adaptions and equipment they are fundraising for will give him the quality of life he deserves.
“We are so humbled by everyone’s support,” said Tracy, who works as a cleaner.
“With the adaptions and equipment everything will be so much easier. He is five on December 18 and is getting bigger so these things will really help us and Nathan,” she added.
The family have been blown away by the support from people and businesses in Ashington. A number of pubs and clubs in the area held collections, including the Premier pub in Ashington who raised £420, The Cherry Tree at Stakeford added £735, and the couple’s local pub The Hyrste Castle more than £200.
Other donations have been received from Bomarsund Social Club, who raised £370 with a raffle, as well as contributions of £250 each from Coquetdale Round Table and the Northumbria Water Maintenance Team, and £200 from Morpeth Lions.
Residents in the Ashington area have also helped by raising money through taking part in the Great North Run, Junior Great North Run and Great North Bike Ride. Generosity has come from all corners of the community, including three friends Kevin Barnfather, Stu Mullin and Kevin Bowman who raised £965 at their joint 50th birthday party at Guidepost Club. All three asked party-goers not to bring presents but to contribute to the collection instead.
Tracy added: “It is all so overwhelming, you hear so many bad things and it is humbling to know of the nice things people do. It is just a great feeling and it is fantastic to have all these people come forward. We just want to say a huge thank you to everyone for their support.”
To find out more or to donate visit the website Tracy and Steven have set up, www.nathansneed.co.uk .