Stevenage parents elated at appeal success to help six-year-old son with tongue tie

The Jennings family are so grateful to the community for helping to raise the money needed for Aiden

The Jennings family are so grateful to the community for helping to raise the money needed for Aiden's tongue tie operation. - Credit: Archant

The parents of a six-year-old boy are celebrating after an appeal to fund life-changing surgery for their son reached its target in just four days.

Aiden, six, will now get the life-changing operation he needs to live a normal life, thanks to the h

Aiden, six, will now get the life-changing operation he needs to live a normal life, thanks to the help of others. - Credit: Archant

Aiden Jennings, a pupil at Roebuck Primary School and Nursery in Stevenage, was born with tongue tie – a tight piece of skin between the tongue and floor of the mouth which restricts movement of the tongue and can cause a speech impediment.

Tongue tie is not uncommon in babies and can be easily rectified, but Aiden’s parents, Kate and Jay, say the problem was not diagnosed and has caused increasing problems for their son.

Jay said: “It was never picked up on by the NHS when he was a baby and it has led to him being unable to pronounce his words correctly.

“Aiden is fully aware he is different and this has had massive implications on him socially, being unable to talk to his friends and family because everyone struggles to understand him.


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“He has become a very shy and introverted boy, rather than when he was a very happy bubbly boy who loved to be the centre of any gathering. Now he would rather sit in the corner of a room on his own than be embarrassed by talking.”

Jay says Aiden is now having difficulty with spelling as he can’t sound out basic words he should be able to spell. “Despite intensive one-to-one support at school, Aiden is increasingly behind his peers in every stage of development,” he said. Kate says they have applied twice for NHS funding for the procedure to have the tongue tie corrected, but have been refused, and so have decided to go private.

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She said: “He’s had various problems with speech and language development through his life and he’s very introverted. He chooses to hide away from it all. We are just concerned that, the older he gets, the worse it will get.”

On Friday, Jay set up a JustGiving fundrasing page with a target of £750. By Monday, £850 had been raised, with many donors choosing to remain anonymous.

Jay said: “We are now able to change one little boy’s life forever. Thank you to all the nameless people who donated. I don’t know who you are, but thank you.”

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