The parents of a 20-month-old West Yorkshire toddler suffering from cerebral palsy have launched a £20,000 fundraising drive to pay for specialist stem cell treatment in Central America.
Little Imogen Holmes has been diagnosed with spastic quadriplegic cerebral palsy, a condition which has left her unable to speak and with only limited use of her arms and legs.
Her parents Briony Winstanley, 21 and Stephen Holmes, 25, of Fitzwilliam near Pontefract, want to raise £20,000 to take their daughter to Panama for treatment at the Stem Cell Institute.
Mr Holmes, said: “It could achieve her walking unaided, it could achieve her talking.
“If it means her saying a few words it would mean a lot.”
Miss Winstanley said Imogen underwent an MRI scan at Sheffield Children’s Hospital before being diagnosed with the condition at Pinderfields Hospital, Wakefield, last June – just over a week after her first birthday.
Miss Winstanley had become concerned about Imogen’s development as she was not able to sit up or stand unaided.
She said: “She can’t pick anything up or feed herself. It is a struggle, but we have to get by.”
Miss Winstanley added: “Imogen is amazing. She is determined and will try and crawl and walk.”
Imogen’s grandmother Pauline Winstanley, 56, of Knottingley, said: “The other day she was trying to crawl and I just burst into tears.”
She added: “If the treatment doesn’t work we can tell her when she is old enough that we tried.”
Family friend Chris Doyle, 28, of Calverley, Leeds, has organised a fundraising family fun day at The Hut community centre on Kershaw Avenue, Airedale, Castleford, from 11am to 4pm on Sunday May 27.
He said there will be guest appearances from Castleford Tigers players, an auction of sporting memorabilia, a raffle and face painting.
Go to www.gofundme.com/imogens-stem-cell-treatment