Help Valley toddler 'Bubba' on a challenging journey

Jack 'Bubba' Waddington
Jack 'Bubba' Waddington

Loved ones and friends of a fun-loving Ribble Valley toddler who has multiple disabilities are fundraising to ensure he has a more fulfilling, enjoyable and comfortable life.

Two-year-old Jack Waddington, affectionately called “Bubba”, along with his parents, Clint and Danielle, are on a challenging journey. Jack was conceived via IVF treatment – a much-wanted, planned and dreamed-of baby.

Having waited years for a miracle to happen, Clint and Danielle were overjoyed to meet their little “Bubba”.

Sadly, Jack has disabilities due to the effects of contracting Cytomegolavirus, a virus developed while in the womb.

Jack has co-ordination problems and is severely visually impaired and registered blind with diffused viral brain damage.

Now, a charity concert has been organised by family friend, Linda Ennis, at Downham Village Hall, to raise awareness of CMV and to buy items to stimulate Jack.

Danielle, a midwife, recalled the moment the couple discovered she was pregnant : “Pregnancy was the easy bit. I felt the best I had in ages. We had been trying for many years and I was so fortunate to sail through my pregnancy. As parents we were completely blessed when our Bubba entered our lives.”

Danielle explained she began to notice a difference in Jack’s development when he was only a few months old.

“I started observing Jack like a hawk. I just had a gut instinct there was something wrong and it was eating away at me inside.”

Jack underwent an MRI scan at six months old and the results confirmed the couple’s worst fears.

“We were told Jack’s MRI showed significant findings, he had diffused brain damage. My scream echoed up the corridors. We were distraught. Hearing the words it’s possible Jack may never walk or talk will stay with me forever. We were later told it was likely that Jack had contracted CMV.

“I’ve had to change my area of work because Jack attends numerous hospital appointments. He has taught us so much, it’s been a very hard journey.

“We’ve found courage and strength that we never knew existed. We realise it’s going to be an emotional rollercoaster and we fear the future because we don’t know what Jack’s ability will be nor his needs and how much assistance he’ll require.

“At the moment we are in a good place. Jack is showing good progress, he is vocalising, his head control is improving and he’s full of character. He’s a happy little boy.

“We’re very thankful to my friend, Linda, for going to such effort to not only raise awareness of CMV, but to also want to help us a family.”

The charity concert will be held on May 18th and 19th and all profits will go towards CMV Action UK and Downham Village Hall. The village hall will be used as a seated concert venue, the car park will have a marquee with a licensed bar, seating areas and a stage.

The 16 female folk musicians who are performing are from Ireland, Wales, Northumbria, Kent, Oxfordshire, Yorkshire and Lancashire. There will be local female traditional folk dance group demonstrations in the teatime break on both Saturday and Sunday.

Although this is a pre-bought ticketed event, Friday evening in the marquee is free entrance to anyone wishing to go and listen to or play/sing.

Full weekend tickets are £55, this allows entrance onto the event site and into the concert venue. Day tickets are £10 for each day. This allows entrance onto the event site, but not into concert venue unless a £5 fee paid on the door for each individual act. However, day ticket holders can go into the marquee and enjoy musical entertainment performed by musicians who wish to take to the stage.

Linda said: “Jack is a fighter. Nobody can say or know how far Jack will develop physically or mentally. For Clint and Danielle the future is an unknown quantity, but positivity and faith in a fulfilling future is what moves this little family forward to consider and try whatever options, treatments and offers of help is available.”

If anyone or business would like to support the event, please e-mail cmvfolkweekend@gmail.com or you can donate directly by logging onto www.justgiving.com/crowdfunding and searching for Jack (Bubba).