Help needed to strip house as part of DIY campaign

New home for Aidan Jackowiak Smith at Firestation Cottages in Alnwick.'Picture by Jane Coltman
New home for Aidan Jackowiak Smith at Firestation Cottages in Alnwick.'Picture by Jane Coltman

A rallying call has been made for volunteers to help strip a house as part of a massive community makeover for a youngster with a rare medical condition.

The Gazette has teamed up with Alnwick-based MKM Building Supplies to launch the Aid For Aidan campaign, which is a DIY SOS-themed initiative to support Aidan Jackowiak Smith and his family.

The three-year-old has Cloves Syndrome, suffering from swelling to his face and body. His parents, Vikki and Karl, are set to purchase a new house in Alnwick, but it needs a major transformation.

The property, which is in a bad state of repair, has to be adapted to make it suitable for the tot, including widening doors for wheelchair access and creating a sensory garden.

That’s why the Gazette and MKM have stepped in; to help the family by rallying traders, businesses and residents to come forward and offer their services.

As part of the campaign, we are now calling on volunteers to give up some of their spare time to help strip and clear the property, so that work can begin. Jobs that need doing over a series of days include removing carpets and stripping wallpaper.

There has been a slight delay with the purchase of the property, but the family expects to complete on Wednesday. It is then hoped that the stripping and clearing work – which will take place on a number of Aidan Days – can begin towards the end of next week. However, this will not start until after the keys have been handed to the family.

To register your interest, call the Gazette on 01665 602234 and ask for James Willoughby. Check the Gazette’s website next week for updates on exactly when the Aidan Days will happen.

The campaign has already sparked a big response. Businesses have offered to help with various labour jobs, while residents have come forward to say they will take part in decorating and other tasks.

The Gazette will soon be in touch with everyone who has offered to help to let them know where they fit in with the refurbishment.