A THREE-year-old boy with cerebral palsy could soon take his first steps unaided after he was deemed eligible for leg surgery.
Jayden-Vito Mazzotta-Drapper, from Walcot, was diagnosed at the age of one with spastic diplegia, a muscle-stiffness which prevents him from standing on his legs or walking without the support of a frame.
In December, his family began raising the £35,000 needed to cover the cost of a complex operation, which would enable the Jayden to have full use of his legs, and the subsequent months of physiotherapy.
Doctors in Swindon have now confirmed he is a suitable candidate for the surgery. He has been referred to Bristol surgeons who will examine him and decide whether he can have selective dorsal rhizotomy, which involves cutting nerves in the part of the lower spine responsible for muscle rigidity.
“We have had the referral to Bristol but we’ve not had an appointment yet,” said Jayden’s mum Charlene, who along with partner Jason has raised £21,500 towards the procedure.
“The doctors on this end have agreed that he is suitable for it. That’s a big development.
“I’m a bit nervous and anxious. And the more money we raise the closer we are getting. It’s happening.
“Jayden is not too bad but he is getting pains in his legs. It gets worse as he gets older. I don’t think Jayden understands what the operation involves but he says, ‘I’m getting an operation to walk.’ He really wants to walk.”
Now Charlene is hoping to secure more funds at a Rock'n'Roll night on Saturday night at the Rodbourne Cheney Working Men’s Club. During the day family and friends will also hold a collection in the town centre.
“I think if we could raise £500 with both it would be fantastic,” she added.
“We will be doing a collection and some friends will also be busking for us. Maria Strange has arranged a big disco at the Rodbourne Cheney Club.
“I don’t even know her but she approached me on Facebook. People we don’t even know are trying to help – it’s fantastic.
“We need £35,000 and we are hoping to get it by January and do the surgery when he turns four. But if we don’t have it by January we will continue until we do.”
The Rock'n'Roll night featuring local band Nitelife Duo will start at 7pm. Entry is free.
To make a donation, visit The Jayden-Vito Fund Facebook group or go to www.justgiving.com/Charlene-Mazzotta