AFTER eight exhausting months of relentless fund raising, a Sleaford boy and his family are finally setting off to the States for his life-changing operation.
Joel James, 11, jetted off to America yesterday (Tuesday) with his family to undergo the crucial Selective Dorsal Rhizotomy (SDR) operation in St Louis Children’s Hospital in Missouri to relieve some of the symptoms of his cerebral palsy, enabling him to walk without falling over.
His mum Karen sent out a warm thank you message on Monday to everyone who has helped them to raise the money needed to get Joel there:
“We would just like to say a huge thank you to everyone for all their support over the last few months of fund-raising, it is appreciated so much.”
In the last eight or so months, with readers’ help, the family has raised around £43,000 to fund Joel’s operation, with many people taking part in running, rowing, hugging and cycling challenges for Joel, and a huge amount of events organised by his family including fun days, disco nights, fairs and collections.
But the fund-raising must continue while the family is away, as the overall target of £50,000 still needs to be reached to pay for Joel’s aftercare and physiotherapy, and if anyone would like to continue raising money for Joel, Karen and family would really appreciate the support.
SDR is a complex procedure which treats the nerves in the lower limbs to improve Joel’s mobility, and requires a few weeks of aftercare in the USA after the operation. Then the family will have to fly back to the USA 12 months later for a check-up.
l Joel will be going into surgery on Friday August 3 - we will do our best to keep readers updated on his progress.