Brave little Olivia gets pioneering treatment

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Brave little Broch girl Olivia Downie is believed to be the first youngster in Scotland to receive a pioneering cancer treatment.

Olivia’s parents, Stephen and Lauren, re-launched their appeal to help fund crucial medical treatment for their daughter at the end of January following a devastating setback when it was discovered that two new tumours had started to grow and progress while Olivia was being treated in Germany.

No NHS funding has been forthcoming for the new RIST therapy and haploidential stem cell transplant that Olivia is now due to receive in Germany.

Olivia’s treatment fund was recently given a tremendous boost when Moray couple Angela and Christopher Main donated £17,000 from funds raised for their son, Logan.

“Watching your child suffer with Neuroblastoma and lose his battle is worse than words can explain, but knowing other children are still fighting to stay alive when all that stands between life and death is money, means we can’t rest, we have to fight on for these children”, said Angela.

Families Against Neuroblastoma (FAN) are assisting the Broch family as Olivia battles with this horrific rare childhood cancer.

FAN is a national charity comprising bereaved families fundraising for children still fighting.

It is dedicated to providing support, information and assistance in all aspects of dealing with Neuroblastoma, and is seeking to fund specific research into cutting edge treatments of Neuroblastoma.

Linza Corp of FAN told the Herald: “Olivia will be our first child from Scotland to receive this new therapy. Children suffering from this rare cancer need unimaginable sums of money to have a chance of living and bereaved families know this and are desperately trying to keep kids alive while shouting for help.”

Speaking about the support they are receiving Lauren said: “Every day we watch Olivia getting more and more sick, and at the same time we see children who have had the treatment we want for Olivia getting better and better, and even going back to school.

“To us, this isn’t just a gift of money, it’s a chance of life for our daughter.

“Angela has always been there even though she has her own grief and torment over her darling Logan. We feel like we are all part of a family with Angela and Chris and other Neuroblastoma families we’ve met.

“Knowing Angela has already lost her son but still fights on to help kids like Logan is an amazing thing, and we are very grateful”.

Lauren continued: “We are so grateful for the support we are receiving from friends and the local community.

“The Zumbathon should be a great event and we hope to see as many people there as possible. Every penny counts and time is running out for our little girl. If anyone else would like to hold an event for Olivia we would be very grateful.”