It was just a few weeks after enjoying Christmas that Joseph Lillywhite began to feel unwell. Several visits had been made to the GP where Joseph was thought to be suffering with a virus. No longer interested in playing with his new Christmas presents, Joseph’s condition worsened and concerned parents Helen and Mark took their 5 year old son to casualty.
Tests revealed that Joseph had neuroblastoma – a very aggressive childhood cancer. A tumour had grown around his kidney with evidence of cancer in his bone marrow, hips and thighs.
“Words cannot describe the complete and utter devastation of finding out that our precious child had been diagnosed with neuroblastoma,” says Helen.
Like more than half of children diagnosed with neuroblastoma, the cancer had spread throughout Joseph’s body by the time it was discovered meaning that Joseph had the high risk form of the disease. This is significantly more difficult to treat than other forms of childhood cancers.
“Joseph is a very brave little boy who has dealt with far too much pain and suffering in his early years,” says his mother, Helen. “He has fought with grit and determination and we are very proud of him.”
Joseph was initially diagnosed in January 2013 but is now doing very well. The last set of restaging scans show that he is NED which means that currently Joseph has no evidence of disease.
Helen and Mark are over the moon to be in this position but are cautious as “we understand that it is very early days and Joseph is more probable than not to relapse during these first few years.”
Joseph’s parents launched a fundraising Journey for Solving Kids’ Cancer [SKC] because he falls into the high risk category.
If Joseph were unable to join a UK trial aimed at preventing relapse, or needed clinical treatment that is only available abroad then funds raised for SKC could be used to help Joseph, and children like him.
Parents Mark and Helen would like to fundraise for SKC to help Joseph and other children with this disease. The charity, could with your help, financially support children if they can’t join UK trials or if they need a clinical treatment that is only available abroad. To date, funds raised for SKC have enabled 21 children to access potentially life-saving clinical treatment abroad, furthermore funding ground-breaking neuroblastoma research.
Helen writes “The charity also support families and we are assured that if we need their help at any stage or in the future they will fully support us.”
Joseph’s parents thank you so much in advance for your kind donation.
Please help us to help Joseph, and children like him, by making a donation to SKC. Every donation made for SKC, no matter how small, will make a difference.
If you can help by holding or organising a fundraising event to raise money please contact the fundraising team at SKC on 020 7284 0800.