Helen first heard about Family Fund through her community nurse early on in Andrew’s diagnosis of Diamond-Blackfan Anemia. “Our first application was for a dry suit as Andrew loves to swim. It really allowed us to do an activity together as a family and my daughter enjoyed it as she got to spend time with her brother.”

When it came to applying again, Helen knew that Andrew’s diagnosis would now result in a lot of hospitalisation. “He was due to have a bone marrow transplant followed up with chemo and a hospital stay of five weeks in isolation, then six months of isolation at home. One of my worries was Andrew being apart from his family. We researched different methods of communication and as his uncle already had an iPhone we decided to go with an iPad. We even got my 70 year-old parents to buy one, but they had to install broadband in their house first."

"Using the iPad to Facetime all his different family members allowed Andrew to stay in contact with everyone, he would even receive emails from his nursery where they would all sing and dance to him. It also helped my mental health, as it allowed me to communicate with people who weren’t health professionals; it really kept us together as a family.”

“I knew that Andrew would be missing out on a lot of school time, but the iPad has supported his reading and writing so that he has now gone into school at the same level as his peers and doesn’t feel left behind. It has also allowed him to be at the same technological level as his peers, it amazes me how quick he is with it.”

“Since his bone marrow transplant, which his sister Lexie donated to him, Andrew has been doing really well. We still have to make a few appointments to the hospital and the iPad helps with those long trips, I will pre-load it with his favourite programmes and he will sit quietly in the car for the full journey. He loves Peppa Pig and has even started watching episodes in Gaelic and Welsh.”

“If we didn’t have the help that Family Fund has given us we would have had to borrow the money from my parents or saved up for the iPad, Andrew definitely wouldn’t have had it in time for his hospital stay.”