When Thomas was younger, he became very sick, his Mum was told he had contracted meningitis. She was terrified. Thankfully, after a lot time in hospital, Thomas recovered, but the effects of the illness left him with a brain injury and Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD).
His Mum, who is also disabled, cares for him on her own because Thomas’ Dad died when he was a toddler. This can be a huge challenge as Thomas has a brother and a sister with additional needs of their own, and Mum relies on benefits for the family’s income.
When Thomas’ bed recently broke, his Mum couldn’t afford to replace it. The springs were coming out of the mattress and would scratch and cut Thomas as he tried to sleep.
To stop Thomas hurting himself on the broken mattress, he would sleep in his Mum’s bed. But because of Thomas’ conditions and his Mum’s disability, neither of them could get a good night’s sleep. This had a knock on effect on the whole family.
They were told about BBC Children in Need’s Emergency Essentials Programme by their support worker, who applied for a grant on their behalf. The application was reviewed and a decision to award a new mattress for Thomas was made within a week.
Now Thomas can sleep safely on his own bed and his Mum can get a better night’s sleep so she can care for her three children. Whilst it is still difficult for Thomas’ Mum, a weight has been lifted and Thomas feels much happier that he has somewhere comfortable to sleep at night.
Interested in finding out more? Applications to the Emergency Essentials programme are currently open, but must be made by a registered referrer, such as a social worker, family liaison officer or member of a support organisation. Referrers can register now on the Emergency Essentials webpage.