Dad-of-six from Huddersfield shortlisted for national charity award

Ben Carpenter has been nominated for ‘Family Carer of the Year’ at the 2021 Sense Awards.

A single dad of six adopted children with complex disabilities, has been shortlisted for an award by the national disability charity, Sense.

Ben Carpenter, 37, who adopted his first child when he was just 21 years old, has been shortlisted for the ‘Family Carer of the Year’ award at the annual Sense Awards.

He is now a proud dad to Jack, 14, who has autism, Ruby, 11, who has complex needs, Lilly, nine, who is deaf, Joseph, six, who has Down’s Syndrome, and two-year-old Louis, who has cerebral palsy and is blind. He also adopted Teddy, who had a rare genetic disorder, Cornelia de Lange syndrome, and sadly died of sepsis in November 2019.

Ben, who previously worked in the care sector, has dedicated his life to caring for his children. He works to promote adoption, helping prospective adoptive parents to consider adopting children with complex disabilities. Following the loss of his child Teddy, Ben is also working to raise awareness of sepsis.

During the pandemic, Ben cared for his children alone throughout lockdown, ensuring that his children’s individual educational needs were met. His children’s schools reported what an amazing job Ben did, and how much the children improved in that time.

Speaking about being shortlisted for the award, Ben said: “I’m absolutely blown away and honoured to be shortlisted. My children are my absolute world and I make it my duty to offer independence and equality. Each one of my children is thriving. I don’t like blowing my own trumpet, however, I know that with my passion and dedication I have allowed them to be who they want to be, supporting their disabilities to reach their full potential.

“When my little boy suddenly and unexpectedly passed away, it was a massive shock to us all. I now do what I can to promote sepsis awareness and the devastating impact it can have.”

Sense Chief Executive, Richard Kramer, said: “Ben believes that no one, no matter how complex their disabilities, should be left out, isolated, or unable to fulfil their potential. The dedication he shows to his children, and support for each of their individual needs, is incredible to see. We are delighted to have Ben on our shortlist for 2021 ‘Family Carer of the Year’.”

The Sense Awards recognise the outstanding achievements of people with complex disabilities, as well as the staff, carers, family members, volunteers and fundraisers who support them. Winners will be announced on November 25. For more information about the Sense Awards visit: www.sense.org.uk/sense-awards

Huddersfield Times

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