A FOUNDATION that makes specially-adapted items for children with missing limbs has been made the chosen charity for this summer’s Barnsley Live music festival.

The LimbBo Foundation was started by Adam and Katie Dengel last year to help their son Tommy, who was born without part of his arm.

Adam, of Shepherd Way, Royston, has also been a fixture in the town’s music scene for many years as the owner of DC Studios recording studio on Shambles Street - and said it was an ‘honour’ to be selected.

“The festival has changed over the years but it’s become a staple in the town,” Adam, 30, said.
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“It involves a hell of a lot of people, and it’s really nice that the team have associated us with such a prestigious event.

“I’m not as hands-on in the scene as I used to be, but we have all been mates for years.”

On June 19, volunteers will be collecting donations for the charity, started by Adam and Katie to help their four-year-old son Tommy who was born without a right forearm due to amniotic band syndrome - a rare condition in which stray bands of tissue wrap around the limbs in the womb and cut off blood flow.

Adam said: “It started as a little non-profit organisation, and it’s since developed into a fully registered charity.

“Tommy got an arm from someone else and it put a huge smile on his face, so I wanted to learn how to make them for him to do the same.

“Once I had figured out how to do it, I thought, why can’t I help other children like him?

“I’ve had quite a few sleepless nights to make sure kids get their arms. But it means a lot when you see the photos they send in.”

Adam, who works at Sheffield Arena and puts in his charity work in his spare time, won an Exceptional Achievement award alongside Katie at last year’s Proud of Barnsley awards.

As well as the artificial limbs, made using a 3D printer in Adam’s garage-turned-workshop, the LimbBo Foundation now produces adapted bicycles and - inspired by Tommy’s ‘banging around’ on a toy drum kit and Adam’s musical background - specially-made drum sticks.

“He wanted to play drums and so we got him a kit for Christmas,” said Adam.

“I was thinking about making the sticks for a while, so I sat down on Christmas Eve without any idea of what I was doing and made a prototype that actually worked quite well.”

And Tommy has even started taking drumming lessons at Rhythm Inc music school on Church Street.

Barnsley Live team member Chris Scarfe said: “Barnsley Live is really pleased to have the LimbBo Foundation as our charity partner for the 2019 festival. They’ve made such fantastic progress in the relatively short time they’ve been formed and we hope we can help keep that going.

“We always said from the start we’d support local charities where possible, and as Adam has been part of the Barnsley music scene for years, LimbBo seemed to be the obvious choice.”

Adam, who also uses the foundation to produce educational materials and organise events for children with limb difference, added: “It’s not just about raising money, but also awareness of what limb difference is, so people can see those affected in a different light.

“Barnsley is renowned for its music scene, it’s such as a supportive group of people and the festival brings everyone together.”