DREAMS of a toddler receiving a life-changing operation to help her walk unaided have moved a step closer - but the battle is not over yet.

The parents of two-year-old Georgie Gibbs were thrilled to find out her funding application had been accepted by South Worcestershire Clinical Commissioning Group but on Thursday will still need a green light from Bristol Royal Hospital of Children for it to go ahead.

It moves them a step closer to their dream of Georgie, who has spastic diplegic cerebral palsy, undergoing a selective dorsal rhizotomy (SDR).

A spokesperson on behalf of NHS South Worcestershire Clinical Commissioning Group said: “When we receive complex case requests they’re discussed by the local Complex Needs Panel which makes a decision based on the clinical need of the individual.

“In this instance, the panel convened a meeting on Thursday, September 24 due to the urgency of this individual case and a decision to fund the aftercare was agreed.”

Clare and Carl Gibbs, from St John's, said the news was the next part of the puzzle as they continue to fundraise for their daughter to have the operation privately in the States if it fails or to pay for equipment and aftercare if their application is successful.

Mrs Gibbs said: "Getting the news was amazing. It really has been a lot of stress and very traumatic week of worry and not knowing if we would get it or not.

"It is one more piece of the jigsaw fitting into place but we still have pieces to find this is just one step closer to the operation

We haven't finished the jigsaw though.

"We are pushing on with fundraising and the last 24 hours since it appeared in the Worcester News have been wonderful.

"I went out for a friend's birthday meal and we were talking about everything that was going on and a couple on another table came over and gave me £40.

"I just don't know how to thank everyone - the generosity from friends, family and complete strangers has been overwhelming.

"I also want to thank Robin Walker (Worcester MP) for the help and guidance he has given us through this difficult time."

The dedicated family, which includes eldest daughter Ella, are pushing on with their £60,000 fundraising which will either pay to fly Georgie to St Louis Children's Hospital to be seen by doctor Tae Park, who pioneered the procedure, or will go towards paying for equipment, therapy and housing adaptations not covered by the NHS.

Anyone wishing to support the family can do so by joining the Facebook group facebook.com/groups/HelpGeorgie or can donate via PayPal using the email address helpgeorgie@gmail.com.

An account has been set up for Georgie and cheques made payable to Clare Gibbs can be sent to 20 Blenheim Road, St John's, Worcester, WR2 5NG.

Anyone wishing to discuss fundraising ideas should contact 07583 865461.