UK op hope for brave Kai

Presentation by staff of AGC, Thornton to Kai Hodgkinson and his family.
Presentation by staff of AGC, Thornton to Kai Hodgkinson and his family.

The family of Fleetwood youngster Kai Hodgkinson now hope the operation he needs to help him walk unaided could be performed in England rather than America.

If so, it could save the family – who are desperately trying to raise £58,000 for the total cost of the medical procedure, flights and accommodation –thousands of pounds.

Kai’s parents Brian and
Caron, of Hesketh Place, currently have £35,000 which would be enough to pay for the Selective Dorsal Rhizotomy(SDR) treatment needed to help Kai, who has cerebral palsy, walk unaided. Dad Brian revealed his hopes this week after the family was given another boost in the form of £1,000 from AGC Chemicals Europe, based at the Hillhouse industrial estate, Thornton.

Brian told the Weekly News: “It has been in the news in the past few weeks that the SDR operation is now available more widely in Britain, at centres in Bristol and Leeds. Unfortunately it is still not available on the NHS, because it does not seem to have sufficient recognition, but it is available privately.

“If we can get Kai in at one of these centres, we would have enough money for that now, and wouldn’t need to raise the extra £20,000 to cover all the American costs. We would need to get a referral from Kai’s GP and it would not happen overnight, but it would be a massive help.”

Brian said that if they could not get four year old Kai in at Leeds or Bristol, they would still keep fund-raising for the operation in America.

He added: “Everyone one has been so generous, and we want to thank AGC for this generous gesture.”

AGC, the chemicals wing of Japan-based Asahi Glass Company, handed over £500 from its charity draw, with another £500 given after retiring employee Jack Gibbs donated a retirement gift to Kai. Susie Claridge, marketing officer, said: “This is a really worthwhile cause and one we are all too happy to help with.”

Fund-raising continues and to pledge a pound visit www.justgiving.com/ kickstartforkai or text KAIH50 £1 to 70070.