“I look at Dylan and how happy and cheeky he is and feel truly blessed for the help we have received from the Trust.”

Dylan lives with Duchenne muscular dystrophy which is a muscle-wasting condition with no cure or treatment. When Dylan lost his ability to walk in 2016, his mum Tanya contacted the Trust for a non-repayable grant to adapt their home.

“We were adapting our home to make a downstairs bedroom, wet room and access for Dylan to get in and out of the house.

“We received financial support from the Retail Trust which meant we could complete all the work needed without having to get a loan or owe any more money. This was a huge relief as we knew more equipment would be needed later.”

Since 2016 the Trust has continued to support the family, including another grant to complete the work in 2018. Dylan is now a teenager and is thriving in a specialist secondary school equipped for children with his needs.

Even as his condition deteriorates Dylan makes the best of everything. During the 2020 summer lockdown, the renovated outside space was invaluable to the family. Tanya and her husband were able to relax, now confident that Dylan can safely play outside. They made the most of the fantastic weather, playing with the dog, and even having family water fights.

“These things have made a huge difference to Dylan’s life. The changes have given him back his independence and allowed him to make choices about where he wants to go and what he wants to do. For example, Dylan can now choose if he wants to go and play in the garden.”

The adaptations to the family home have helped provide Dylan with the independence every teenager needs. As he grows older his condition will continue to change but he will still need to feel independent, the modifications will allow for Dylan’s developing needs and personality.

“Dylan never used to play in his bedroom because he was always afraid that no one would hear him calling and come to help him up, but now he can play in his room knowing I am outside the door.

“It is, however, the things we take for granted that have had the biggest impact for Dylan including being able to brush his own teeth, shower himself and get out his own clothes. It brings a tear to my eye when l see his little smiley face. Amazing how it makes him feel grown up and in control.

“I only wish you could see how much your help has impacted our whole family life. The adaptations have made daily living so much easier for us. For example, we don’t have to carry Dylan up and down the stairs to bed, we don’t have to carry him up to the car or out into the garden so he can play and we no longer have to lift him into the bath.

“I look at Dylan and how happy and cheeky he is and feel truly blessed for the help we have received from the Trust, without it we would be under huge financial pressure and day-to-day living would be unbearable.”

If you and your family need financial support please visit Financial aid for tips, guidance, and to apply for non-repayable grants.

Find out more about the financial support available