Has your child been affected by neuroblastoma? Call 020 7284 0800 for help and information.

Ruby’s Journey

At her second birthday party, Ruby happily enjoyed all the excitement and atmosphere. For Ruby’s parents, Victoria and Rob, and her big brother Freddy this was a special day creating family memories.

Not long after Ruby’s birthday party, Victoria and Rob were aware that their daughter’s behaviour had changed.  “Ruby became quiet and withdrawn” explains Victoria “Ruby started to refuse food – she was infamous for her huge appetite!” 

Other vague symptoms included a wheezy chest and once Ruby began a course of prescribed allergy medication. This seemed to help, but her appetite was not improving.  Ruby’s hardworking parents were enjoying a rare weekend away when they received a telephone call from Ruby’s anxious Grandparents. The local pharmacist had seen Ruby and thought she looked jaundiced.

“Ruby was clingy, unhappy and vomiting,” says Victoria. Ruby’s parents immediately returned home and took their daughter to the local Accident and Emergency department. By this point Ruby had stopped eating completely. She lost so much weight that a worrying growth in her stomach became visible.

Ruby was quickly transferred to St. George’s hospital where a tumour biopsy was the first planned surgical procedure for Ruby.  Her blood pressure was so high that the medical team considered it too dangerous to go ahead. Only when Ruby’s blood pressure was under control did the biopsy take place – the results of which left Ruby’s parents shocked and devastated. Their 2 year old daughter Ruby had stage 4, high risk neuroblastoma – an aggressive childhood cancer.

“When we found out about Ruby’s diagnosis we were in complete shock, it all seemed (and still does) surreal and we were absolutely devastated, we couldn’t believe this was happening to our little Ruby.” Says Victoria, Ruby’s mother.

As with more than half of children diagnosed with neuroblastoma, the cancer had spread throughout Ruby’s body by the time she was diagnosed, making her condition one of the most difficult kinds of childhood cancer to treat.

“Ruby had a large tumour in her abdomen going up her spine and disease in her bone marrow” says her mother, Victoria. “The tumour was pressing on her internal organs and made her extremely poorly. Her belly was swelling up and pushing on her lungs. She could hardly breathe and needed oxygen”. 

The family are fundraising for Solving Kids’ Cancer to help Ruby, and other children like her, should she need to follow an expensive treatment path. With a high risk neuroblastoma diagnosis, the probability of relapse is high. Through Ruby’s Journey, Solving Kids’ Cancer can ensure that every possible avenue for treatment is open to her.

Victoria describes Ruby as “A very brave 2-year-old who loves babies, drawing, playing with her brother’s toys and eating cheese!” 

Ruby has received endless amounts of chemotherapy, surgery, radiotherapy, High dose chemotherapy and a stem cell transplant and immunotherapy to treat her disease. Ruby is currently about to undergo surgery to try to remove the remaining residual disease. 

After Ruby’s surgery we are hoping that Ruby and her family will get the news they’ve been waiting for, that Ruby has no evidence of disease.

Victoria, Ruby’s mum says “It has been an absolute battle for the past 2 years; I wasn’t prepared for how harsh the treatment is. Seeing her so sick, crying in pain, she just had such a haunted, terrified look on her pretty little face. But in true Ruby style she has never given up, and fought with courage I have never seen before in anyone, let alone a child. I admire her so much, her strength is fearsome! I wish I was as strong as her!”

Read a poem written for Ruby by her brother Freddy

How you can help

There are many ways you can help Ruby; by making a personal donation; holding a fundraiser; getting sponsored to take on a challenge; or simply following and sharing Ruby’s story through her Facebook page.

Download our free Ruby resources (below) to support your fundraising, and click here for even more resources, including fundraising ideas, templates and guidance.

Campaign poster

Event template poster

Sponsorship form

You can make a donation via this page, or if you’d prefer to text donate, text RLYJ88 and your amount £1 – £10 to 70070. If you’d like any help supporting Ruby’s campaign, please get in touch on 0207 284 0800 | fundraising@solvingkidscancer.org.uk

Terms and Conditions for Journeys

All donations are paid into Solving Kids’ Cancer Europe’s general funds to further its general charitable purposes. The funds raised by this Journey are not restricted for the child’s use. However, the trustees of SKC have agreed to designate 93% of funds raised by this Journey to help the child and their family pay for potential future treatment costs and all other associated costs including travel and accommodation. We will use the remaining 7% to pay for some of SKC’s administrative and fundraising costs.

If the child no longer needs the funds, or if the trustees decide, at their absolute discretion, that the funds should be used for a different purpose, they may redesignate all or part of the 93% for SKC’s general charitable purposes. We are very grateful for your charitable donation.

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Solving Kids' Cancer

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