A CAMPAIGN has been launched to raise £23,000 to buy a powered wheelchair which will help to transform the life of a young boy.

Kenzie Hughes is desperate to get his hands on a SnapDragon powerchair to enable him to get around his Middlesbrough home as well as getting out into the street to explore to his heart’s content.

His carer, Michelle Hughes believes that the specially designed wheelchair will mean the seven-year-old will be able to enjoy his independence like never before.

The severely disabled youngster, who doctors are still diagnosing the full extent of his medical conditions, was overjoyed when he took one of them for a test drive at the end of last year.

Mrs Hughes said: “There is quite a lot of event being organised to try and raise the money for the Kenzie’s wheelchair, including a sponsored head shave, dip in the North Sea and a Facebook page, but there is a lot of work to do.

“When he tried out one of the wheelchairs, he was absolutely delighted. It will help him to get around the house and at school but the most exciting thing for him is the ability to go outside unaided and explore.

“At the moment he has to be lifted into his wheelchair and pushed around but with the SnapDragon he can go wherever he wants.”

She said the youngster, who has difficulty communicating, took great delight using the specially designed chair which also enables him to stand up – something he had never been able to do before.

And she says if it wasn’t for the help and support of Cath McNicol and Carolyn Bean, who run Middlesbrough Powerchair Football Club, Kenzie would never have experienced the freedom offered by the powered wheelchair.

She said: “They told me to bring him along to the football to try out one of their chairs, I didn’t think he would be able to manage but I was wrong. He absolutely loved it and has never looked back.

“He is always smiling and happy, even when he is quite ill, so to get a powered wheelchair for him would bring a permanent smile to his face.

To help raise money a Facebook page has been set up at www.facebook.com/getkenziemoving and there is also a sponsorship page at www.justgiving.com/Tracy-Hall7/