A BLIND toddler could be spending her last Christmas in darkness after Citizen readers helped buy her pioneering eye treatment in China.
The Brooke Chilton fund, launched through this paper just four months ago, this week hit its half way target with an amazing £25,040.
That means Brooke’s family can book the first of two treatments in China to literally grow back the two-year-olds stunted optic nerves.
Doctors from Great Ormond Street, who say this is the tot’s only hope, are already writing reports to send to the Chinese experts.
She will travel to China in May with her mum Leah and gran Dawn Turner. They will stay for three weeks while eight bags of fluid containing stem cells removed from the umbilical cords of new born babies will be inserted intravenously into Brooke.
“We will have to go back for a second session six to 12 months later so we can’t afford to take a break from fundraising. But sometimes patients show results after the first treatment.” said Leah.
“It is so exciting and we really can’t wait to go. The thought of my daughter being able to see the world for the first time is amazing.”
Though there is no guaranteed success with the treatment, there are many miracle stories of cures – including one blind teenager who can now see well enough to take her driving test.
Brooke, born with optic nerves too tiny to ever let in light, can see nothing but blackness.
Leah, who has bought her daughter musical books and a trampoline for Christmas, said: “This week we put up our Christmas tree and, though we carry Brooke to it and let her feel the decorations, it breaks our heart that she can’t see it.
“We console ourselves by thinking that this time next year she could be seeing Christmas colours and ripping open her presents for the very first time.”
The family has again thanked the hundreds of people who have donated to the Brooke Chilton appeal fund, particularly Asda at Bletchey for the store’s ongoing commitment.
Donations can still be made online at http://www.gofundme.com/zy0do or cheques can be sent to the Citizen offices.