A Milton Keynes charity is encouraging people to send a message of hope this Christmas and help raise vital funds for research into brain tumours.
The annual Hope Tree Christmas Appeal is for a donation and to write a special message of hope or remembrance on a bauble. These decorations are hung on the Hope Trees which are situated at four Centres of Excellence and at the Brain Tumour Research HQ in Shenley Wood. The proceeds of the appeal will fund vital research which is taking place at the centres in the University of Portsmouth, Plymouth University, Queen Mary University of London and Imperial College, London.
Launching this year’s campaign in Milton Keynes are Liberty, 7, and her brothers Henry, 5 and Sebastian, 2, who placed baubles in memory of their grandmother Virginia who died from a brain tumour in 2007.
Virginia Kimberley was in her 20s and had just become mum to twins when she was diagnosed with an astrocytoma. She battled the disease for 30 years, undergoing numerous operations and treatments. Following a stroke, she was admitted to a hospice where, after eight years of full-time care, she died aged 57.
Her daughter Caroline said: “I’m really sad that my mum never got to meet any of her eight grandchildren. This appeal gives us, and others, the opportunity to remember loved ones and keep their memory alive at a time when it is all about family and being together.
“I tell my children about their grandma all the time and feel angry that even if she was diagnosed today, the treatment offered for her type of tumour would be virtually the same, so the outcome would also be the same. This is why more research is vital to beating this horrible disease.”
Nationally the Hope Tree Christmas Appeal is being fronted by seven-year-old Phoebe Vines who lost her mum to a brain tumour earlier this year. To find out more about this year’s appeal and to make a donation visit https://www.braintumourresearch.org/donation/hope-tree-appeal