Help Yanne, nine, get op to walk
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Mum, Josephine Rwibasira, Yanne, nine, and sister Michaela, 14.
ONE boy's dream to walk and play with his friends could come true after his family were inspired by a Bracknell youngster's "amazing" cure.
Nine-year-old Yanne Nkurunziza, from Emmer Green, suffers from Cerebral Palsy and is restricted to a wheelchair after being born at just 33 weeks with a tumour on his leg. He also had breathing problems which restricted oxygen from reaching his brain.
But Yanne and his family have been given hope after seven-year-old Callum Berry, whose family teamed up with The Chronicle's sister paper The Bracknell News to raise £45,000 to pay for a life changing operation in America, began walking for the first time this week.
Yanne lives with his parents, Josephine and Justin, originally from Rwanda, two sisters and a brother, and the family is focused on raising the $50,000 (£31,000) needed for the Selective Dorsal Rhizotomy procedure in New York.
Speaking to The Chronicle, Josephine said: "To see Yanne happy will be our happiness because at the moment he struggles. He will be able to live his own life as he grows up and that will change his life forever.
"Yanne struggles really hard to do the simplest of movements. He loves to play with his friends and he just wants to be able to join in properly."
His classmates and teachers at Christ the King Catholic Primary School in Whitley are set on helping their popular pal and the school will donate all proceeds from its Christmas celebrations to Yanne's cause, and staff are discussing further ideas for fundraising events.
Headteacher John Cosgrove said: "Yanne is such a nice and friendly boy. The staff and the pupils are really behind the task in hand and we hope to organise a lot of special events."
Callum's grandad, Kevin Perkins, wished Yanne and his family best of luck following in his grandson's footsteps and said: "Our experience has been nothing short of incredible and it would mean so much if more families, like Yanne's, were able to benefit from this amazing procedure."
To donate to Yanne's cause visit www.yannesjourney.org
This article appeared in Reading Chronicle 27 Oct 11