A FAMILY have made a desperate plea for a "forever home" in the Richmond area after struggling to find a property suitable for all of their needs.

Alan and Karen Jessop, from Richmond, have been fostering for more than 10 years after their own four children had grown up. They have now adopted three of the children they have been caring for since they were infants – Joshua, 10, Summer-Jane, nine, and Ryan, two.

Joshua suffers from Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy, a terminal muscle-wasting condition for which there is no cure.

Mrs Jessop said: “We’re launching a search for a forever home to rent in or near Richmond that will be long term.

“We’re currently in a three bedroom bungalow which we love but need more bedrooms and to be able to adapt for future needs for all the children.

“Unfortunately current landlord is unable to help because a trust owns the property. Richmondshire District Council housing are onboard and will do the adaptations needed without cost to the new landlord through the disabled facilities grant.

"Eventually we need a five-bedroom home with open plan living space and a couple of bathrooms. This would give all of the family room to grow. Joshua is desperate for his own room to decorate and a big enough garden to play in his wheelchair with the other children in our family.

“As Joshua’s condition progresses and he becomes a full-time wheelchair user, independence and socialising becomes paramount.

“We wouldn’t be able to do this without the space for him to move around in and have access to as much of the normal daily activities as possible, such as enjoying family mealtimes or watching television together.

“Equipment for Joshua will be bulky and plentiful so areas to store ventilators or support chairs is a necessity.

"Not only do we have Joshua to consider but Summer-Jane, who has developmental trauma from being a foster child and Ryan who has chronic lung disease.”

Contact Journey with Joshua via Facebook to support.