A GRANDMOTHER and grandson have separately received Proud of Barnsley nominations after going through an extraordinary journey together.
Daniel Green, who will turn seven in September, and his grandma Zoe Darcy – both from Darfield – have been fighting constantly for years after Daniel was diagnosed with cerebral palsy and mitochondrial disease at only four months old, leaving him on palliative care as he struggled to stand, sit and eat.
Zoe has worked tirelessly to care for her grandson and supported important campaigns that helped raise awareness of Bluebell Wood Children’s Hospice in Sheffield.
Her extra charity work is done on top of her day to day struggles, which were exacerbated by the cost of living crisis which made her bills skyrocket due to the amount of machines required to keep Daniel healthy.
She has been nominated as a Carer of the Year for her unstoppable spirit by her friend Nicola Cahill.
Nicola explained: “Along with everything she does for her little boy, Zoe also makes awareness of other children that need help and charities like the Tafida Raqeeb Foundation.”
Thanks to her work Daniel has managed to survive years longer than expected, and continues to play and smile every day, never giving up on seeing tomorrow.
The news came as quite a shock to Zoe, who said: “I’m so overwhelmed – there are just so many people who love us.
“I’ve always loved Barnsley, the community here is so good and supportive.
“People have not forgotten about us – usually with these things you see a lot of support at the beginning and then it tends to slow down.
“For us the momentum hasn’t stopped – we’ve always got the community behind us.”
Daniel has been separately nominated as a community hero, however he hasn’t received the news yet.
“He’s had lots of appointments this week so it’s been very busy – we’re hoping to take him out this weekend and tell him then.
“If everything goes well and the weather’s alright, we want to take him to the seaside.
“Taking Daniel anywhere is difficult – a trip that would normally take an hour ends up being a lot longer because we’ve got to stop regularly.”
In spite of his illness, Daniel’s joy has never wavered and he helps bring happiness to everyone around him.
Zoe added: “Daniel is a gift – he’s helped us see how precious life is.
“Lots of kids in his position wouldn’t make it – Daniel’s got the community fighting for him and they all help him to keep fighting alongside them.
“We’re grateful for everyone and it’s an honour to be nominated among all these amazing people.”
In her nomination for Daniel, family friend Margaret McGarvey said: “Anyone who meets Daniel cannot fail to be smitten by him.
“Daniel, the Barnsley boy, shows just what true Barnsley grit and determination can achieve.
“Sadly it will end sooner rather than later and having him as your hero would be a memory to cherish forever.
“No-one represents a hero better than Daniel and no one represents Barnsley more than him.”