A FOOTBALL-mad boy is hoping to walk unaided if his parents can raise £35,000.
Lewis Munday, nine, has diplegia cerebral palsy, which means he struggles with stiffness in his legs.
Despite this he still plays in goal for Tetbury Town FC for the final few minutes of the game but he aches a lot and gets tired when he walks.
He has a kaye walker and tripod sticks, plus a wheelchair for longer days but is hoping an operation will help him walk independently.
The surgery, known as the Selective Dorsal Rhizotomy operation, is a complex neurosurgical technique which targets nerves in the spine to treat spasticity in the lower limbs.
The technique used at Frenchay Hospital is the same as that developed in America and takes up to seven hours.
However, the surgery is not currently funded on the NHS so Lewis’s parents need to raise £35,000 to pay for the operation and intensive therapy involved afterwards.
So far, the family have raised £2,629, and have lots of events planned to reach their target, including a balloon race, marathon runs and and head shaves.
Lewis’ father Andy Munday, who runs the Kembrey Inn pub, in Kembrey Park, says he has been overwhelmed by the support that has already been shown and hopes to use the pub as a focal point of fundraising.
“I took to Twitter last weekend just to contact a few people and get the word out there but it went crazy and we have already had so many people offering their support,” he said.
“Lewis has been lucky, he is still able to do a lot of things, but it would mean so much to him if he could have this operation.”
Lewis’ mother Louise Ponting, said: “We have got so many ideas for the fundraising and the charity Tree Of Hope has been really good in helping us.
“We want all the events that we do to reflect Lewis’ fun and energetic personality, which is why we think things like a balloon launch would be ideal.
“We wanted to start raising the money straight away and then if consultants decide Lewis is not appropriate for the surgery or the NHS can fund it, the money will go to the charity Tree Of Hope, which helps children who need special treatment.”
To donate, go to www.justgiving.com /lewis-munday1.
OTHERS WAIT FOR SURGERY
LEWIS is not the only youngster in Swindon who is fundraising for the operation.
Alycia Ellis, Jack Pike and Robbie Davies and Corey Cummings all have the same condition and need the operation to enable them to walk.
Corey, six, of Coate is set to have the operation in May.
Last year his family and friends raised more than £24,000 to pay for the operation, while waiting to hear whether he was a suitable patient.
At the end of last year, he was given the go ahead, and in January, he was told the operation will take place at Frenchay Hospital in May .
Meanwhile, Alycia Ellis, of Abbey Meads, was presented with a £1,500 adapted trike at Christmas, thanks to local charity The Tony Long Trust.
The family of Jack Pike, four, are on the waiting list to meet the SDR team at Frenchay Hospital.
He has been refused NHS funding for the operation so the family are going to pay for it themselves.
The family of Robbie Davies, six, of Lower Stratton, have also set up a fundraising page in a bid to raise money for an operation to help him walk.
They started fundraising for an operation in the USA in 2010, but stopped when it became available at Frenchay Hospital, in Bristol. Then they were also told by the NHS that it would not pay for the operation.