A Cottingham motor neurone sufferer says there is a desperate need for more volunteers in the region to support people suffering from the debilitating illness.
Paul Carrison, of Cottage Green, in Cottingham, has lost the use of his legs and says he has rapidly decreasing function in his arms.
Mr Carrison says he is one of around three dozen people from Hull and the East Riding to suffer from the disease, but that more care, support and volunteers are needed.
The 71-year-old has suffered from the disease for three years and moved into the centre of the village from Skidby after being diagnosed.
He said: “Back in 2014 I started having problems with my right shoulder and my right leg. I have arthritis and assumed it was that playing up but went in for the checks and tests anyway.
“I saw my GP in January ’15 and then it took another six months of tests on my muscles in my legs and arms. It was June 2015 that I got the diagnosis.
“One of the main symptoms I noticed was losing the feeling in my feet and then at that stage I was having to use walking sticks. But now I’ve lost the use of my legs completely and I’m now in the process of losing the use of my arms.”
He said that disease is ‘cruel’ and means that sufferers require a lot of help and support from volunteers.
“I went out for a meal at the weekend and for the first time publicly my wife had to feed and put the food into my mouth,” he said.
“Eventually you end up completely paralysed. You can’t speak, can’t eat. It’s a horribly cruel illness; you can see and hear but completely lose other functions.
“You need constant care and that always means we need a lot of help, support and equipment. It would be amazing if some people forward to volunteers and help us.
“I’ve had a lot of great support from volunteers like Andrew and Kevin. It’s important to have people who can help and just be there for an informal chat or fundraising.
“Over the last 25 years there’s only really been one tablet developed that works, so it still needs a lot of support and funding as a condition.”
Andrew Hancock from the Motor Neurone Association in Hull said: “We support around 30 people covering the whole of the city of Hull and the East Riding. We are there for anyone who suffers from MND.
“We have the support aspect of the role, but also fundraising. Those who suffer from it need a lot of support and equipment so it is vital to ensure we get the funding needed to help people like Paul.”