A DISABLED mother who feared she would lose her son has won her care battle – with help from The Gazette.
Desperate Amanda Smith felt abandoned when Blackpool Council social services announced plans to reduce her care plan.
Ms Smith has been given help to care for her nine-year-old son Nathan since she had her left leg amputated below the knee more than three years ago.
But after her plight was highlighted in The Gazette, the council promised to review the situation.
The 39-year-old, of Caunce Street, central Blackpool, said: “I’m delighted. All my hours are being given back apart from breakfast visits at weekends.
“I’m so relieved. It’s one less thing for me to worry about.”
Ms Smith was born with a condition called talipes, which means she had no heels and her feet were in the wrong position.
She endured 15 different operations by the time she was 16 but her left ankle collapsed ﬁve years ago.
A carer visits the family every morning to give Nathan, a pupil at Devonshire Primary School, his breakfast and get him ready for school.
There are also visits on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays when Ms Smith’s carer cleans her house and helps her to shower.
A carer also does Ms Smith’s shopping, picks Nathan up from school and gives him his tea.
But Ms Smith faced being left with no visits at the weekend, no cleaning visits and no tea time help.
The review was held between social services and occupational health.
Ms Smith added: “Nathan was my main priority. I couldn’t see how they could make a nine-year-old boy a full time carer.
“It definitely helped to contact The Gazette.
“If I hadn’t fought for it, they would have walked all over me.
“I’m hoping other people can stand up for themselves too.”
And after reading the story in The Gazette, one of Ms Smith’s neighbours, Helen Edmunds, offered to help the family by taking Nathan swimming and on trips to the park.
Ms Smith added: “I’m quite touched. It’s great because Nathan has chance to mix with other children. I’m really grateful.”
A Blackpool Council spokesman said: “We are pleased we have reached a resolution that Ms Smith is comfortable with.”