A BRAVE little boy from Gainsborough had a special party in his honour to raise funds to beat his genetic condition.
Four-year-old Joshua Skelton was lived with Cystic Fibrosis for all of his life.
Last week, friends of the family put on a Christmas Fair to raise money for Cystic Fibrosis Trust - so that Joshua might live a much longer life.
“It is a life-threatening condition,” said his mother Donna Skelton, from Morton Terrace, Gainsborough. “The life-expectancy is about 31-years-old.”
Joshua has to take several forms of medication every day, and is always at the risk of infection, with Cystic Fibrosis mainly effecting the lungs and pancreas.
“He’s only four, but he can tell you that he has CF and he knows what it means - which is either sad or remarkable whichever way you look at it,” said Donna.
“He had a rough beginning to the year. When people with CF get an infection the best way to treat it is intravenously, so for the first half of the year he was in and out of hospital a lot.”
She continued: “Whenever he’s been ill, he has still gone to nursery and school - it’s often hard to see it and CF can be an invisible disease sometimes.”
However, with advances in research being made all of the time, Donna is confident that Joshua can lead a long and normal life.
“There are a lot of people our there with CF that are in their 40s and 50s now,” she said.
“I think and hope he can lead a normal life, but it’s often pot-luck, and we’ve been very lucky.”
She went on: “He can catch an infection so easily, but we can’t protect him from everything and we don’t want to hide him from the world.”
“At the same time there are many other little ones with the disease who have it far worse than him.”
Now, after a special Christmas Fair in Corringham to raise money for research into the disease, organised by family friend Samantha Walford, the Skeltons would like to thank everyone involved for helping to make a difference.
“Josh has been out raising money for CF with us since he was 18-months-old, but I don’t have the time or energy to do it any more so I’m happy to have found such a good fund-raiser in Samantha,” said Donna. “I’m really grateful for that.”
Donna added: “He absolutely loved it so thanks to all the parents and children for coming along and showing their support - they may only think that that they came to a disco and bought a cake but it all goes to the CF Trust so hopefully Joshua can live to go to secondary school with their children.”
Organiser Samantha Walford said that Joshua was a little inspiration.
“My daughter used to go to the same baby group with Joshua and they have grown up together since then,” she said.
“But there will come a day when they’re grown up and my daughter will be falling in love and getting and it’s sad to think that Joshua might not have that.”
She continued: “So, we’ve got 30 years to help them find a cure so he can do all of the things that my daughter will be doing - it’s what he deserves.”
The Christmas Fair in Corringham saw lots of children enjoy a disco, tombola, stalls and a visit from Santa. Samantha would like to thank CC Mobile Disco and everyone else involved in helping to raise £432.
q For more information or to make a donation to the Cystic Fibrosis Trust you can visit www.cftrust.org.uk or call 0300 373 1040.