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'DIY SOS' style project underway to help Kesgrave teen Daniel Dellar

PUBLISHED: 09:00 10 March 2018

Almost 30 contractors are involved in the project. Left to right, Matt Cottrell, Mandy and Nick Dellar, Ben Allen. Picture: SARAH LUCY BROWN

Almost 30 contractors are involved in the project. Left to right, Matt Cottrell, Mandy and Nick Dellar, Ben Allen. Picture: SARAH LUCY BROWN

Archant

A family in Kesgrave are having their lives transformed by a 'DIY SOS' style project organised by local charity GeeWizz.

Almost 30 subcontractors are donating around £65,000 of materials to the project which will help to transform the home of 14-year-old Daniel Dellar.

Daniel has autism and Dravet Syndrome, a form of paediatric epilepsy. His condition means that he often has multiple seizures in a day.

The project will see the creation of a new extension onto the family’s home. This space will house a specially adapted bedroom and bathroom for Daniel.

His parents had initially hoped to just get a new bath installed after showers were found to give Daniel fits.

Mandy and Nick Dellar say they have been overwhelmed by the response to the project.  Picture: SARAH LUCY BROWNMandy and Nick Dellar say they have been overwhelmed by the response to the project. Picture: SARAH LUCY BROWN

His parents have suffered five hernias between them from carrying him upstairs.

GeeWizz got involved with the project after being contacted by Guy Nicholls from Tippers R Us.

The charity had previously helped the family to purchase a special bed for bed Daniel.

Now the transformation is the biggest project that GeeWizz have ever been involved in.

Mandy and Nick Dellar amongst the renovation work that Gee Wizz are carrying out for them.   Picture: SARAH LUCY BROWNMandy and Nick Dellar amongst the renovation work that Gee Wizz are carrying out for them. Picture: SARAH LUCY BROWN

The family say they have been completely overwhelmed by what the project has become .

Mandy, Daniel’s mum, said:

“It’s still sinking in. It’s unbelievable and emotional.

“All we wanted was a bath for our son because we have to carry him upstairs.

Daniel Dellar will benefit massively from the new rooms. Picture: MANDY DELLARDaniel Dellar will benefit massively from the new rooms. Picture: MANDY DELLAR

“We had to swap the whole house around. Our living room became Daniel’s bedroom so there was no need for him to go upstairs.

“Unfortunately every time he had a shower it set seizures off.

“It wasn’t fair.”

“Everyone we have met so far can’t do enough for us. It’s just great.”

The project started in earnest at the end of last month and is due to take around three months to complete.

The project is currently a few days behind schedule after contractors had to battle with the ‘Beast from the East’ to continue working.

One of those heading up the project is Matt Cottrell from Foxwood Ceramics and Cottrell Brickwork.

“I’ve known Gina (from Gee Whizz) from way back when,” said Mr Cottrell, “she phoned me via Guy Nicholls at Tippers R Us and asked me if I would get involved.”

With help from Ben Allen from Birch Homes and Guy Nicholls the group looked into their contact books and found other contractors to get on board.

“We obviously know a lot of people in the industry.

“So we called in all the favours that we possibly can from both subcontractors and suppliers.

“Everybody has been very,very generous in the help they have given us.”

Despite the conditions they have faced their team remain confident about getting the job done.

“We had a foot of snow there last week but the boys carried on and we got all the demolition done. So it didn’t stop us too much, it’s put us a couple of days behind.”

Gina Long, GeeWizz founder, said: “The voluntary support we have received from the local community towards Daniel and his ‘SOS restoration’ has been incredible.

“On behalf of Daniel and his family, I would like to say a heartfelt thank you to everyone who has worked on the project this week.”

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