Help give Dakota from Weston Hills her first voice

Cerebral palsy sufferer Dakota Read with (from left) sister Lachan, mum Paula, brother Jake and Jakes girlfriend, Julie Whiting. Photo (TIM WILSON): SG290316-103TW
Cerebral palsy sufferer Dakota Read with (from left) sister Lachan, mum Paula, brother Jake and Jakes girlfriend, Julie Whiting. Photo (TIM WILSON): SG290316-103TW
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Cerebral palsy sufferer Dakota Read continues to touch the hearts of people around the world with repeat showings of the TV programme that changed her life.

In 2013 the BBC’s DIY SOS team carried out a major remodelling of Dakota’s Weston Hills home, so the little girl and her family could live more comfortably under one roof.

Now the Spalding Guardian is launching an appeal so Dakota (12) can celebrate another milestone: having a real voice for the first time in her life.

Her loving mum, Paula Wheeldon, revealed this week the family has been quietly fundraising for an eye gaze machine costing £5,600, which will allow Dakota to speak aloud using a synthetic voice.

Today (Thursday) the Lincs Free Press Children’s Fund is adding £500 to the £1,800 already collected – and we are appealing to our readers to help us find the remaining £3,300 so Dakota can at last break her silence and share her thoughts with her family.

Paula said: “We have often thought about what she would actually say, the things she would have heard over the 12 years.”

• Full story in Thursday’s Spalding Guardian.

Previously...

DIY SOS team to transform home of disabled girl (8)

Striding towards Dakota’s dream