AT TWO years old Millie Ralph has already been through more than many do in a lifetime.
Millie, from Ampney Crucis near Cirencester, was diagnosed with non-Hodgkin lymphoma in March last year and spent more than four months in Bristol Children’s Hospital undergoing extensive chemotherapy.
Millie’s mum Tara described the discovery that her precious daughter had cancer as “devastating”.
“One minute we were a normal family, the next we found ourselves trying to adapt to life on a busy oncology ward, terrified of what lay ahead,” she said.
With her cancer now in remission, Tara is running a nearly-new mother, baby and toddler sale at Ampney Crucis Village Hall on Saturday March 9 in a bid to raise £1,000 for the Children’s Cancer Appeal.
Money raised from the sale will go towards the charity’s bid to raise £250,000 to build a new conservatory and playroom at the hospital which will give long-term patents the chance to see out over Bristol and the surrounding countryside.
Tara said the hospital’s play facilities had been invaluable to her family – including her four-year-old son Austin and eight-month old Cooper who arrived when Millie was in hospital – while her daughter was being treated.
“Having a child in hospital for several months really tears the family apart,” she said. “Good facilities at the hospital help you make the most of the precious time you have together.”
She added Millie – who still needs to have daily oral chemotherapy treatment at home until March 2014 – had come to see the hospital as home and that the planned new facilities could be an excellent addition for other children in the same position.
“When Millie was well enough to get out of bed a trip to the playroom really cheered her up,” she said. “She had to be isolated for long periods during treatment and really missed going outside, so being able to see the sky, birds and trees from the ward would have made such a difference to her.”
Tara, who is also planning a number of other fundraising events for charities such as CLIC Sargeant, said donations to the sale had been flooding in.
“We’ve got lots of really great stuff and it’s still coming in,” she said “I’m going to be well stocked up by the time the sale comes around.”
Any items can be donated to the sale by calling Tara on 07950 678 197 or by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org