The Laura Crane Youth Cancer Trust has pledged to ‘match fund’ up to £20,000 for a specialist paediatric radiotherapy ‘chillout’ area.
The new facilities will be created at St James’s University Hospital’s radiotherapy department in the Bexley Wing.
And then the Huddersfield-based charity have pledged a further £10,000 to ensure the facilities are kitted out to be ready for use.
Children’s radiographer Lucy Hume added: “We were delighted to be contacted by the Laura Crane Youth Cancer Trust and were absolutely overwhelmed when we heard of their generous funding offer which will make such a difference to getting the project off the ground earlier than planned.
“We are now having a final fundraising push with our friends and supporters the incentive of knowing everything they raised will be doubled is a real boost and will mean we can create something really special. We are now hoping we might be able to get building work underway soon and completed by Christmas.”
So far the hospital’s appeal has collected more than £13,000 since it was launched in May and to formalise the partnership, Leeds Rhinos star Keith Senior, an ambassador for the Laura Crane Youth Cancer Trust, visited St James’s to see the work of the department and to hand over a ‘match funding’ cheque for £13,000 to the hospital.
Coincidentally, Keith coached James Brook, aged 18, during his time with the Leeds Rhinos Scholarship under 15s. James has been undergoing cancer treatment at the hospital and regularly uses the department.
Pam Thornes, Trust Manager for the Laura Crane Youth Cancer Trust, commented; “As soon as we heard about the teenage appeal we realised it fitted perfectly with our aim to improve facilities and the experience of young people with cancer.
“We got in touch with the radiography team to find out more and we were thrilled to come on board with our pledge to give a pound for every pound the appeal raises.”
The paediatric radiotherapy team based at St James’s see and treat between 70 and 100 young patients of all ages from around the Yorkshire region every year.
To donate to the appeal text 70070 using PTYA51 £5 or to see the work of the Laura Crane Trust go to www.lauracranetrust.org/