Rowlands Gill family receiving #CardsForDom ahead of the 21st birthday they thought he’d never reach

#CardsforDom. Photo by: Bethany Dodgson.

A family from Rowlands Gill, Gateshead have started to receive cards ahead of his 21st birthday.

Lisa Skeen, 44 and Bethany Dodgson, 23 are hoping to receive cards from people around the UK and the world, to give Dominic Skeen a birthday he won’t forget on July 10.

Dominic, who has a range of health problems, has defied the odds to reach his milestone birthday.

His family were warned he wouldn’t be able to walk and talk after being diagnosed with a bone infection and hernias in the first few months of his life.

Dominic now has a global, mental development delay, due to fetal valproate syndrome, as well as this the 2o-year-old also has autism, arthritis, glaucoma, congenital cataracts and has an under and over active thyroid.

Permission to use from Bethany Dodgson and Lisa Skeen.
Permission to use from Bethany Dodgson and Lisa Skeen.
Permission to use from Bethany Dodgson and Lisa Skeen.
Permission to use from Bethany Dodgson and Lisa Skeen.
Permission to use from Bethany Dodgson and Lisa Skeen.
Permission to use from Bethany Dodgson and Lisa Skeen.

Bethany Dodgson, Dominic’s sister said: “It’s amazing that cards are starting to arrive already! I can never thank people enough for their kindness.”

His mother, Lisa Skeen added: “I am keeping them hidden till his birthday so it’s a surprise. People are so kind, sharing on Facebook and Twitter, but we must keep on as I want this birthday to be one he will never forget.”

Dominic is fascinated with countries from around the world – so the family thought #CardsForDom would be a good idea.

“I thought as it’s his 21st, do something he wont forget.

“I want to do this for Dominic because [of] his disabilities, [he] misses out on so much that a young man does, so I wanted something special,” his mother, Ms Skeen, said.

The Skeen/Dodgson family/photo by Bethany Dodgson.

With Dominic’s disabilities, he does not fully understand his 21st birthday is a big deal.

“It’s even bigger for us. It shows him his 21st is a special birthday for everyone,” Miss Dodgson added.

The hope is that sharing a status on social media, the family will reach people from around the world, who are willing to send a birthday card sent to him in time for his big day.

As well as receiving cards and going on a trip to Disneyland, Dominic will be taking part in a bike escort organised by Paul Skulls.

Mr Skulls, of Biker Escorts UK, said: “I feel great as I know I can trust all the bikers in the group to make a good show of all the events we do, sadly it’s a bit to far for me to go I’m in Crystal Palace, in South East London.”

The event, which will take place on July 9, the day before Dominic’s birthday, will see Dominic and his mum being escorted from around 11am to the Washington Wetlands Centre in Sunderland.

If you would like to send Dominic a birthday card you can contact Lisa Christina Skeen or Bethany Dodgson on Facebook for the delivery address.

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