Coronavirus: Strangers come to aid of autistic boy

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Heinz donationImage source, Gill Axworthy
Image caption,
Donations were left on the doorstep of the family home in Liverpool

A mother who feared she would not be able to feed her autistic son the only food he will eat returned home to find donations on her doorstep.

Gill Axworthy struggled to buy Heinz spaghetti with sausages for her 11-year-old son Lewis amid coronavirus-linked stockpiling.

It is the only food that he will eat - devouring two tins a day.

But following an online appeal, people from across the world reached out to help the Liverpool family.

"Living with autism has never been easy but to not be able to find food to feed your child is something else," said the 50-year-old.

Lewis, who is non verbal, has eaten Heinz spaghetti with sausages every day since he was diagnosed with autism at two years old, and will not eat anything else.

"You can't try to pull the wool over his eyes with other brands. He knows the difference," she said.

Image source, Gill Axworthy
Image caption,
Eleven-year-old Lewis was diagnosed with autism at the age of two

When some people started to panic buy food, Mrs Axworthy was unable to find any tins in her nearby shops.

"I was starting to have panic attacks in the shops," she said.

But, following a social media appeal by her brother and with the help of Liverpool-based support group Autism in Motion, the family have been inundated with donations by strangers.

Jo Gailbraith, from Autism in Motion, said they had received countless messages from people wanting to help including a woman in America who was trying to set up an online delivery from Morrisons.

"I am so grateful and if my son Lewis could speak I'm sure he would thank you all too," added Mrs Axworthy.