thumb Special TrikesKaren and Paul Johnson live in Ossett and are parents of three gorgeous little boys, Charlie, Jack and Joe. Charlie and Jack are 5 years old twins and Joe is 3 yrs old. The twins were born prematurely and were only allowed home from hospital after 12 weeks, many of which were spent in intensive care. Both boys were left with a number of development and health problems but with the great support of Mum and Dad, family and friends, they keep winning the battles to live as near a normal life as possible.

They were 4 years old before they were able to take their first independent steps. Charlie\'s walking has shown considerable progress but he gets tired quickly and needs supervision. Jack is trying extremely hard and is being encouraged to walk without his frame but it its very hard for him and he does need a wheelchair for longer distances or days out. Despite all their problems they have started their education at South Parade School in Ossett where they receive one to one support, but mobility continues to be a source of frustration for them. Recently Jack was given the chance to ride a specially designed trike belonging to a disabled friend and according to Mum it was fantastic, he could pedal it himself, gave him independence and allowed him to play with his younger brother. Jack was desperate for a trike of his own, and Karen and Paul could also see the potential benefits for Charlie. Unfortunately as with all special needs equipment they come with a very high price tag and it is especially expensive when buying for two, initially thought to be up to £2500.

Karen and Paul decided to press ahead with trying to raise the funds and made contact with the Rotary Club of Horbury and Ossett Phoenix which made an immediate commitment to help. Karen\'s dad having seen the impact of the bike on Jack contributed £600, and the sale of no longer needed toys and other items through Ebay raised some more. By the time Jack and Charlie had been assessed and appropriate tricycles had been specified and designed a balance of £700 was required to make the dreams of Jack and Charlie a reality. By using funds raised through events such as a recent brass band concert and the Horbury Show the Rotary Club was able to promise they would pay the balance and enable the order for the bikes to be placed.

On Tuesday of this week the two special twins from Ossett took delivery of two special trikes and on Thursday evening even pedalled themselves (with a little help) home from a parents evening at South Parade School. Rotary Club President Nick Hunter went to see the twins and their new trikes on Friday and was presented with Thank You cards prepared by the two boys. Nick said afterwards, "giving £700 to that family for those two little boys is one of the reasons why I joined and enjoy being involved with Rotary. Its why we raise funds in our local communities and try to help those in need".

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