Austin Manning is a kid with an infectious smile and a twinkle in his eyes.
However, the 7-year-old is one of 7000 in New Zealand with cerebral palsy. He suffers from periventricular leukomalacia (a brain injury), asymmetric spastic quadriplegia, developmental delay and has problems with his vision.
There are no operations available in New Zealand to relieve the spasticity of his limbs caused by the cerebral palsy - yet there is one in the US. The surgery, which reduces muscle stiffness, is offered by Dr Park at St Louis Children's Hospital.
The operation would be a game-changer for Austin but his family needs $100,000 to get him there.
Mother Helen Manning said that, after a traumatic birth with her second son, everything appeared normal in Austin's first few months. Yet, at 6 months old, Austin's eyes were going cross-eyed and rolling into the back of his head.
Plunket told her it would correct itself but it never did, she said.
"It got worse, we went to the GP, who referred us on to the eye specialist, who looked at his eyes and said there was nothing wrong with them and said it must be coming from his brain.
"It was the worst day of my life. We got a speedy appointment with a pediatrician, who offered an urgent MRI. He had brain damage. The worst thing was we didn't know what he was going to be able to do, a waiting game." Learning her son had brain damage was devastating, she said.
"But having said that, he is such a pleasure. He is such a joy, a beautiful happy little boy. I think the way he is, that is what has made him the child he is.
He has said to me before, 'Mummy why can't I walk?'
"He has an amazing personality, he's a mini adult. He's very intelligent, has a memory like an elephant. If you tell him a cellphone number, he will remember it. He will listen to a song and remember all the words and sing it back."
Austin, who is in Year 2 at St Thomas More Catholic School, is above the national standard for reading and spelling. Austin realises he is not like other children his own age, she said.
"He has said to me before, 'Mummy why can't I walk?'"
"Austin can't walk or balance himself. He also has limited movement in his right hand. It would change our families life dramatically - for him to be able to sit up properly and not have all that spasisity, for him to be able to dress himself and hopefully eventually do some walking."
Nine New Zealand children have had the operation at the same hospital and all had been successful, Mrs Manning said.
* To help get Austin to America please head to his Givealittle page here .