A SOUTHERN based charity is calling on the local community to help raise £7,000 for a Winchester nine-year-old who needs a specialist bed.

Finley Collyer is deaf, has Downs syndrome, autism, and the mental age of a two-year old, meaning he does not recognise potential health hazards.

His family have contacted to disabled children’s charity Newlife to help raise funds for a Safespace bed, which will prevent him from leaving his bedroom unsupervised.

Most mornings Finley wakes up at 4am to climb furniture and once unlocked the front door of his house and crossed the busy main road outside.

His mum, Helen, now sleeps on his bedroom floor to prevent similar incidents from happening.

She said: “We have tried everything to help Finley settle at night, even taking all of the toys out of his room and keeping it as basic as possible - but this feels so very unfair.

“He’s a child, he should be able to have his toys in his room.

“Having a Safespace bed would let Finley be like other children - he would be able to play in his room but he would also be safe enough to go to bed by himself.

“It would make an enormous difference to all of our lives.”

The family first approached Hampshire County Council to provide the bed, but were told there is a waiting list of at least 18 months.

Newlife’s senior manager for care services, Carrick Brown, said: “Any kind of delay in assessing a child with a disability has a detrimental impact on their health and wellbeing.

“A specialist bed like this will not only keep Finley safe, but will give Helen the opportunity to get the rest she needs and this in turn will help her care for Finley.

“We understand how important it is to them as a whole family but without the generous support of the public we won’t be able to help.”

To donate to Finley, contact Newlife on 01543 431444 or text FINC10 to 70070.

Alternatively, email local@newlifecharity.co.uk.

Money raised above the amount needed for Finley’s Safespace will be used to help other disabled and terminally ill children in the South East.