A father-of-three has launched a fundraiser for medical treatment that he hopes will help tackle his debilitating illness.
Phil Swindin, from Darrington, was diagnosed with Multiple Sclerosis in 2004, and has suffered “major problems” with his health ever since.
His symptoms have now escalated, leaving him unable to walk more than a metre without support, and relying on caffeinated drinks for short bursts of energy.
He hopes to travel to a private facility in Mexico for a new type of treatment known as Autologous Haematopoietic Stem Cell Transplantation (AHSCT), which has been linked with improvements in MS.
Phil said: “Living with MS is constant and terrifying, as you just get more and more disabled and whatever you do very little can be done.
“My MS symptoms have fluctuated and reared its ugly head at the most inappropriate times and limited my normal physical or mental ability.
“It’s caused major hidden problems in mobility, mental health, energy levels and so many other symptoms.
“I long to do simple things like doing things with my kids, playing football or going for a walk but its out of the question.
“All other avenues have failed so I’m left with only one option, to fundraise for private treatment.”
Phil and his wife Alison launched the fundraiser last month, and have already raised more than £28,000.
The couple also hope to organise a ball in the Spring to help boost funding,
Alison said: “People have just been wonderful. People who we haven’t spoken to for years have been in touch and their words of support are fantastic.
“It sort of feels much more achievable than when we started it. We’re just trying to keep it moving, with more things happening all the time.”
Phil’s treatment is currently booked for April, but will have to be postponed if the funds are not raised before then.
Phil has also been supported by Ackworth mum-of-two Kate Dawson, who successfully underwent the treatment in 2017 and described the results as “life-changing”.
Visit https://www.gofundme.com/f/transplant4phil to find out more.