A fundraising campaign has been launched for an East Kilbride boy with a rare and devastating form of epilepsy.
Max McGhie was only four years old when he was diagnosed with Lennox Gastaut Syndrome, which causes frequent and multiple seizures.
Now aged 13, the drug-resistant condition has left the youngster near-confined to a wheelchair and requiring the constant care of his mum and dad, Seonaid and Dougie.
Nearly a decade on from his diagnosis and taking countless combinations of anti-epileptic drugs and undergoing surgical procedures – one of which saw the youngster nearly die on the operating table – Max can still suffer up to 100 seizures in just one day.
While every seizure Max suffers is life-threatening, his parents live with the constant fear their son could fatally injure himself in the falls which could result from them as he loses all muscle control.
This week, however, Seoniad and Dougie were given new hope when East Kilbride Community Trust launched a fundraising campaign to send Max to a world-renowned centre in Miami, where ground-breaking work is being carried out on children suffering from the condition.
And the organisers hope the people of the town will help them as they bid to send “Max to Miami”.
Max with his pals at the Sunday Club in East Kilbride
Chief executive of the Trust, Monique McAdams, said: “We have gotten to know Max well, through the Sunday Club, and his bravery and determination has moved us all.
“It takes the greatest of effort for him to join in and play football, but he does it every week and he loves it.
“He is such a lovely wee boy and, in spite of all he goes through, he always has a smile for everyone, not to mention a great sense of humour.
“We want to raise as much as possible to send Max to Miami Children’s Hospital and hopefully the experts there can, at the very least, bring his condition under control and reduce the number of seizures which he suffers every single day of his life.”
“It is our hope that the people of East Kilbride, who are renowned for their generosity, will join us and help us raise the money we need to help Max.”
Members and supporters of the Sunday Club, which is run by East Kilbride Football Club for youngsters with additional support needs, have already got the ball rolling with a number of fundraisers in the pipeline.
And Max himself will be joining in when he takes part in a tandem cycle ride round Strathclyde Park with his dad.
The first fundraiser is an amateur boxing night in the Ballerup Hall on Saturday, April 19, at 7pm. Organised by Jackton Boxing Club, tickets priced £15, are available by calling 07718 909999.
With many more fundraisers being planned, the Trust hope to have enough to send Max on his journey of hope by the summer.
To find out more and discover how you can help Max, visit http://www.justgiving.com/East-Kilbride-Community-Trust1.
Alternatively you can contact East Kilbride Community Trust on 01355 279204