BEDRIDDEN: Ricardo with Angus McKenzie and Carmen. Jack Lestrade

Ricardo Julies, 39, of Bonteheuwel has been bedridden for six years and has to fend for his six children, aged six, seven-year-old twins, eight, 10 and 14 with the help of his cousin Carmen Julies, 35.

Ricardo dove into a pool from the jetty at Harmony Park resort in Strand, but the water was too shallow, and he broke his back.

His wife Rene Julies, 38, deserted him and their children a few months later because she “couldn’t cope anymore”.

On Wednesday, Bonteheuwel Ward Councillor, Angus Mckenzie, visited the family’s home, saying clothing, food and even a DVD player have already been collected.

He also offered to assist Ricardo with social housing, after the dad said he’s been on a waiting list for years.

The dad and his kids share a tiny room in Carmen’s flat.

“We are just sad that we couldn’t have helped you a long time ago,” McKenzie said.

They will also try to get Ricardo a motorised wheelchair, a special “ripple” mattress to help prevent bedsores, as well as a suction machine.

Ricardo has a hole in his trachea from which phlegm has to be drained.

Carmen says they’re overwhelmed at the public’s response.

“People as far as Joburg and Pretoria called. Ricardo’s older brother also bought a bed and a mattress for the children.

“We want to say thank you to everyone, especially the Daily Voice.”

A shy Ricardo says he would love to enjoy his new DVD player, but needs a TV first.

“It would keep me busy, and I want to say thank you to all.”

If you can assist, please call Carmen on 082 288 2447.