CARING teenager Callum Garrod has overcome his own illnesses to help look after his little sister.
The 15-year-old, of Amble Avenue, South Shields, has been a big help to mum Mandy.
His younger sister, Gracie, five, was born with a genetic disorder which left her blind in one eye.
The youngster also suffers from epileptic fits and has to be fed through a tube.
Callum, a pupil at Epinay School, in Jarrow, has problems with his own sight, but doesn’t let that stop him from helping to look after his sister. Now, he has been nominated for Child of Achievement in this year’s Pride of South Tyneside Awards.
He was put forward for the accolade, which is sponsored by Northumbrian Water, by his grandma, Janette Garrod.
She said: “Callum has been there throughout to help his mum and Gracie – he’s their rock.
“Callum himself has severe asthma and also has problems with his corneas.
“He has had an operation on one of his eyes and has to have another one soon, or doctors are talking about transplants.
“Gracie would not be able to do what she does if it wasn’t for Callum, and he really helps his mam through things when times are hard.”
Callum’s mum, Mandy, 31, said: “He really is a big help with Gracie. He helps feed her and look after her, and plays with her all the time.
“It was really hard for him when Gracie was born and he saw her go through everything that she did, and obviously he’s going through things himself, but he just constantly worries about Gracie and wants to look after her.
“I’m really happy that my mam put Callum forward for this award because he definitely deserves it.”