Family from Bures hopes Daisy’s Christmas card will raise funds for research
- Credit: Archant
The family of a six-year-old girl who became the first child in the world to receive pioneering chemotherapy treatment for an inoperable brain tumour has produced a Christmas card drawn by the youngster in a bid to raise money for research.
In May, Louis and Anna Brooks were told their beloved daughter Daisy had diffuse intrinsic pontine glioma, or DIPG – a disease which most children succumb to within 18 months of diagnosis.
Although there was no hope of a cure, the family from Bures, near Sudbury, was given a glimmer of hope when Daisy was offered experimental brain surgery at Bristol Children’s Hospital.
The procedure performed by neurosurgeon Professor Steven Gill involved a software-guided robot installing a series of catheters attached to a titanium device to deliver chemotherapy direct to the tumour.
Daisy underwent three rounds of treatment, which has fewer side effects than traditional chemotherapy treatment because less of the drug gets into the bloodstream.
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Although the family recently received the devastating news that treatment will not cure Daisy, they are determined to raise money to help Professor Gill to find new drugs for the treatment of brainstem tumours in children, using direct infusion into the brain.
So far they have raised more than £50,000 through events including a Three Peaks Challenge by a group of Mr Brooks’ friends, and an ice bucket challenge.
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And now Daisy’s uncle, Mark Pilkington, has had a drawing she produced last December printed on to Christmas cards – the sale of which has already brought in more than £2,500.
On Daisy’s website, Mrs Brooks, 43, said: “Although it seems the treatment Daisy has received in Bristol is not going to save her, we are so proud of her to have been part of this pioneering process.
“They have learned so much from her that will help the next children who come along. They have perfected their technique for getting the drugs in, now they need the perfect drug.
“One day we hope there will be a cure for DIPG, that children won’t have to suffer like this and parents, families and friends won’t have to go through the agony that we are.”
The cards cost £12 for a pack of 20 and are available at www.justgiving.com/daisy-christmas-cards
For more about Daisy’s story, visit www.fordaisyanddipg.com