Get Active: Martial arts masters set to help boy overcome disability

Ruban's parents hope to send him to the United States for an �80,000 treatment

Ruban's parents hope to send him to the United States for an �80,000 treatment - Credit: Archant

Combat specialists want you to get active for a good cause by kick-starting an £80,000 bid to reverse a two-year-old’s disability.

Stefan Thompson and Dan Claridge demonstrate mixed martial arts

Stefan Thompson and Dan Claridge demonstrate mixed martial arts - Credit: Vickie Flores

Ruban Selley was born with a condition that is yet to be confirmed by MRI scans, but has made moving his legs impossible.

Dad Darren, an urban krav maga expert, wants to raise cash so Ruban can go to America for selective dorsal rhizotomy, which aims to remove spasticity.

“I’d give up my legs if it meant he could walk,” 26-year-old Darren said.

“Sometimes I walk in through the door and he does this little army crawl over to me – but I know he’d run if he could.”


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He and mum Becki, 28, say it’s vital to raise the cash before Ruban’s fourth birthday to ensure the treatment is effective.

And now the Sidcup couple have help from Barking and Dagenham – in the form of Darren’s training partner of nine years, Stefan Thompson, who is challenging you to take part in one of his self-defence classes on Saturday.

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“This is self-defence and it’s done by everybody,” he said.

“I run classes at Robert Clack every week and we thought we’d use the space to raise money for Ruban and help protect people.”

Darren said his training partner’s kindness was overwhelming.

“The fundraiser’s a brilliant idea – I can’t thank him enough and we’re so overwhelmed by the suport,” he said. “The treatment’s got a 100 per cent success rate. I’ve seen videos of children after the operation and it’s amazing – you can see them running and jumping.

“I’m hoping Ruban will be able to play with his older brother, Mason, who really wants to take him climbing and bike-riding.”

The class is £20 a person and will run from noon to 3pm at Robert Clack Leisure Centre.

It will feature experts in Krav Maga, mixed martial arts and Nikelstick Eskrima.

You can also donate to Ruban online by visiting http://bit.ly/1G7cfmc

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