The Ethos Community Hero of the day for the U’s Sky Bet League Two match against Bury F.C is three year old Elmo Michelson.
In partnership with Cambridge United's Official Match Ball and Website sponsors Ethos, each match day this season will see an individual rewarded for their contribution to sport in the community as the Hero of the Day. As well as featuring in the match day programme and on the Club's online channels, the Ethos Community Hero of the Day will also be given the opportunity to present the official match ball to the referee ahead of kick off.
Elmo's mum Sophie tells his incredible story:
Unfortunately, Elmo suffered a brain injury at birth. He spent the first month of his little life in intensive care, and due to his poor muscle tone, he subsequently spent many months in and out of intensive care, and having to be ventilated due to severe respiratory infections. Many times in the first year of his life we were unsure if he would survive, as we were informed by Elliot's neurologist that it was unlikely he would see his first birthday. But Elliot has defied all odds. So far, he has proved the doctors and the specialists wrong and has truly come out on top. He is a real fighter, but it may be several years until we truly understand his prognosis. In the meantime, we will continue to fight for him, and try to optimise the opportunities he has to enjoy his life as much as he can. He suffers from muscle weakness which means he is unable to walk or crawl. He is nonverbal, and has severe learning disabilities.
Elmo is amazing. He's sociable, curious, funny – and he knows it. His determination is phenomenal. Everything we know about courage and resilience we have learnt from him. We try not to worry about being strong enough to look after Elmo – we're just proud to have someone so incredibly special in our family.
There is no cure for a brain injury, but there are treatments and therapies that can reduce the impact the condition has on Elmo. In time, these may help him achieve some independence. Unfortunately, due to unavailable and limited resources, the NHS cannot support regular or intensive therapy for children like him. As a family, we self-fund and fundraise for all of his treatment. The weekly physio and speech therapy, along with other therapies recommended for children like Elmo, are incredibly expensive and not financially viable for most families. Our fundraising efforts will hopefully enable Elmo further access to the amazing facilities in Los Angeles and Orlando which have already given him a much better quality of life than what he would face without them.
We are hoping to raise enough funds for Just4Children to support Elliot's intensive treatments over the next 36 months. All monies raised will contribute to the cost of these therapies, which we estimate will cost over £60,000. Go Team Elmo are looking for any businesses of individuals who would like to take on fundraising events and projects in aid of Elmo's campaign. We would welcome any one that is willing to support little Elmo and his journey ahead.
To support Go Team Elmo please head to https://www.justgiving.com/campaigns/charity/just4children/goteamelmo today!