Mikey is a playful and loving little toddler, who likes nothing more than to spend hours playing with his toy farm animals while singing “Old Macdonald Had a Farm.” He loves cuddling up to watch Peppa Pig and playing with his baby brother, Bobby.
But in December 2017 when Mikey was just 20 months old and enjoying the build-up to Christmas, his parents noticed a lump in his tummy. After a trip to A&E, the doctors diagnosed his condition as stage 4 high-risk neuroblastoma, with further tests revealing that the tumour had grown from above his right kidney to across almost his entire abdomen. It had heavily infiltrated his bone marrow.
Mikey’s family fundraised with Solving Kids’ Cancer to potentially access treatment not available on the NHS. Following immunotherapy and end of treatment scans, Mikey flew to New York in April 2019 to access the Bivalent Vaccine clinical trial at Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center. If neuroblastoma comes back then survival rates drop to less than one in ten, so Mikey’s family chose this treatment to do everything they can to stop his cancer from coming back.
Mikey was started on a gruelling induction chemotherapy schedule on Christmas Eve 2017, receiving eight cycles of treatment every ten days. He responded well to the initial treatment and Mikey has since gone on to battle his way through a complex eight and a half hour surgery to remove the remainder of the tumour.
That was followed by high dose chemotherapy with stem cell transplant,radiotherapy and immunotherapy treatment. Throughout his treatment, he has had to endure numerous blood transfusions, general anaesthetics, nose tube insertions, injections and antibiotics to fight infections. Amazingly he has remained in high spirits and has helped to carry his family through it with his endless humour and cheeky personality.
He has even taken great pleasure in running down the hospital corridors giggling while attached to medication wires, knowing that his parents would need to chase after him with his medical drip stand!
Christmas in hospital
Mikey’s mum, Caroline, says: “I will never forget when the news was broken to us. I was heavily pregnant at the time and we were all looking forward to Mikey’s first proper Christmas and to introduce him to a little baby brother. We couldn’t have dreamt in our worst nightmares when we walked into A&E that it would be another month and a half before we would walk out of a hospital again.”
“That said, it has never ceased to amaze me how resilient he has been throughout and the strength of his character has shone brightly throughout.”
While Mikey responded well to his treatment, immunotherapy spelled the end of his frontline treatment available on the NHS, and his battle is far from over. When neuroblastoma comes back less than 1 in 10 children survive.
Mikey’s fundraising campaign
So Mikey and his family are fundraising in case they need to access treatment or clinical trials not available through the NHS, to give him the best chance of the cancer-free future he deserves.
He is currently accessing the Bivalent Vaccine clinical trial in New York which his family believe could reduce his chances of relapsing.
“We are hugely grateful for your support,” continues Caroline. “Your donations could help Mikey receive the best treatment available to him. We must keep the cancer away.”
How you can help
There are many ways you can help Mikey: by making a personal donation; holding a fundraising event; getting sponsored to take on a challenge.
Download our free Mikey resources (below) to support your fundraising, and CLICK HERE for even more resources, including fundraising ideas, templates and guidance.
To donate by text, send “MIKEY” followed by any whole amount up to £20 to 70085. This will cost your donation plus your standard network charge. It won’t matter if you leave a space before the number, if you include a ‘£’ sign or whether you use upper or lower case.
If you’d like to help supporting Mikey’s campaign, please get in touch with the fundraising team on 0207 284 0800 and firstname.lastname@example.org.