By Kai Bennett, Local Democracy Reporter
The family of a five-year-old with advanced cancer are appealing for donations so she can get the treatment which would give her the best chance of recovery – and which is not available in the UK.
Beckenham youngster Mollie McCaughan and her family need £300,000 for her Neuroblastoma treatment in the USA.
Mollie began an initial 80-day course of aggressive chemotherapy at the end of August, at The Royal Marsden and King’s College Hospitals.
The youngster’s Just Giving Page has so far raised £180,000 but the family need another £120,000 to reach the target.
Mollie was diagnosed in July 2020 with the illness aged two at the Princess Royal University Hospital in Farnborough.
She had been rushed there after developing a sharp pain in her hip overnight. She had an operation a few days later which released pressure from an infection and reduced the pain – but a scan showed abnormal cells in her hips and after three weeks of further tests and scans Mollie was diagnosed with Stage 4 Neuroblastoma.
She had a 6.5cm tumor on top of her left kidney, around her adrenal glands, renal arteries and spine.
The cancer had spread to her skull and bone marrow. The family was told she had a 40 per cent chance of survival.
Initially the money required for her treatment was £200,000 but it has now risen to £300,000 for the full 18-month treatment, for her to have the best chance of a full recovery.
Neil Fanning, a friend of the family, said: “Following aggressive chemotherapy and radiotherapy treatment in the UK, she went into remission very recently so is in New York, having some of the initial neuroblastoma treatment, which has been paid for with some of the fundraising money.
“We are now just over the £180,000 mark, but £300,000 needs to be raised in total for her to have the full treatment, to give her the best chance of making a full recovery and being cancer free.”
Mollie’s parents Kevin and Sian wrote on her Just Giving Page: “Mollie is our beautiful daughter, who was until recently a happy healthy two-year-old, looking forward to starting pre-school and enjoying playing with her older brother Leo (4) and younger brother Ben (1).
“This news has been devastating to our family and those who know Mollie, and we are desperate to do everything we can to give her the best chance of beating cancer.
“Mollie has begun her treatment with the same delightful outlook as she had through the stages of diagnosis – bringing happiness and joy to all who meet her.
“We are not normally ones to ask for help, but as a family we have to know we have done everything we can to give Mollie the best chance of beating this terrible disease, so she can continue to grow up and live her life with her brothers.
“Hopefully Mollie’s treatment will be successful and any further treatment in the USA will be minimal or unnecessary.
While current medical information suggests it may likely be her best chance, any money generously donated which is not required for Mollie’s treatment will be distributed to support other children with Neuroblastoma in need of help.
Thank you so much.”
The link to Mollie MC’s fundraising page: https://www.justgiving.com/crowdfunding/helpmolliemc The Facebook page, with up-to-date stories/news from the Mollie’s family: HelpMolliemc | Facebook.