A couple determined to give their severely disabled baby the best chance in life have launched a fund-raising appeal.
Elaine Anderson and Jamie Smith are hoping to raise £15,000 to buy essential therapy equipment to help their 16-month-old son, who has cerebral palsy.
Little Dayton, who was born prematurely and is brain damaged, will need care for the rest of his life.
But the couple say their little boy is special and deserves the best that can be done for him.
Mum Elaine, 28, said: “Even when we were first told Dayton was not developing properly we refused to let it get us down.
“He has always got a smile on his face and is always gurgling happily, and it makes us so determined to do all we can to give him the best life possible. We have been told Dayton will not be able to walk, but we still live in hope.”
Dayton’s condition also means he has violent fits and is unable to support himself.
His legs are beginning to twist and his family are waiting to learn if he has curvature of the spine.
But doctors believe Dayton’s condition can be helped by massage and exposure to stimulating sounds and lights.
His parents give him physiotherapy for at least an hour a day to help his muscle tone and he sees a specialist every week.
He also receives sensory therapy from time to time, which he loves.
His mum and dad are so delighted by the progress he has made and the joy the therapy brings him, they dream of being able to build it into his daily life.
They are convinced a therapy room attached to their Grantham home could make a huge difference to the quality of Dayton’s life and are hoping to convince the housing authorities one should be provided at their council house on the Earlesfield estate.
But to fulfil the ambition, the extension will need to be fitted out with a range of equipment, which the couple are hoping to provide with the help of people’s generosity.
The £15,ooo shopping list includes a specialist hydro therapy tub, and a full range of sophisticated sensory and exercise equipment.
Elaine said:”We have a target of three years to raise £15,000 to set up a full sensory room for Dayton at home.
“This will make so much difference to the first few years of Dayton’s life.
“We are calling the appeal Dayton’s Dream and any fundraising activities people can do to help Dayton,however small, will really help.”
Elaine and 26-year-old Jamie have recently moved to Grantham from Billingborough with Dayton, and Elaine’s daughters Ruby, four, and Angel, seven, so they can more easily take their son to hospital and treatment centres. Elaine also has a son, Owen, 10.
Jamie, who is Dayton’s full-time carer and also has a daughter Lola-Rose, said: “When we were told Dayton had cerebral palsy, everyone in the room was in tears.
“But I just told everyone not to worry and that we would fundraise and get the money for everything our new son needed to have the life he deserved.
“And that’s what we are determined to do.”
* For information about making a donation to the fund through the Tree Of Hope charity, go to the webpage justgiving.com/daytons-dream