TIME is running out to help Gwent youngster Callum Arnold raise the cash he needs to ensure his independence.

The Abergavenny five-year-old has a rare condition called Lesch-Nyhan syndrome, which is similar to cerebral palsy.

His devoted parents, Jane and Dean of Wern Gifford, Pandy, need to raise £34,000 by Christmas to carry out vital work on their home so Callum, who is in a wheelchair, can enjoy maximum freedom.

Since the Argus first reported the family's plight at the end of March, the local community have got together to help.

So far they have raised more than £19,000 through donations and sponsored events and a fund has been set up in his name at the Abergavenny Care and Repair store.

But for the work to be completed thousands more must be raised by Christmas Eve.

Work has to start by January next year which is a condition of a social services grant they have received.

Mrs Arnold said: "We've been absolutely overwhelmed by the response from local people - it has been amazing. Thanks to them work has already started but we've still got a long way to go."

Mr and Mrs Arnold have been awarded a social services grant of £30,000 but need to find the rest of the funds for the work, which is estimated at more than £70,000.

They are providing £10,000 themselves, but the rest has to be made up by fundraising.

Work had to start by the end of this year as part of a condition of the grant they have received.

The family's home needs major alterations including a new entrance, kitchen, a specialist bath and hoists.

Mrs Arnold said: "The special bath we need costs £8,000 alone and we also need a special toilet which will cost £3,500.

"It's all about giving Callum the maximum amount of independence and dignity that we can."

* Anyone interested in making a contribution to Callum's fund or organising an event can contact Abergavenny Care and Repair on 01873 854195.