Mum's support for Ocean Terminal's cancer charity Christmas appeal

WHEN little Declan bumped his head three years ago, his family could never have imagined that just a week later he would be diagnosed with an incurable brain cancer.

Saturday, 26th November 2016, 10:11 am
Updated Tuesday, 6th December 2016, 2:40 pm
Declan Jardine, six, and his mum Vicky have benefitted from the work of the cancer charity CCLASP. Picture: TSPL

But if it hadn’t been for Edinburgh’s children’s cancer charity CCLASP, his mum Vicky, 41, said she isn’t sure how she would have coped with the devastating news.

This Christmas, Ocean Terminal are pulling out all the stops in an attempt to raise £50,000 for the CCLASP’s new centre – which is currently being built on the doorstep of the new Sick Kids Hospital, following a major donation from the Howat Foundation.

Customers, staff and businesses at the shopping centre are donating gifts and money to the appeal, and all proceeds raised from Santa’s Grotto will go directly to the charity.

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CCLASP is a parent-led voluntary organisation which aims to alleviate stress for the families and young people who suffer from cancer or leukemia.

They organise special outings, holidays, as well as bespoke transportation to and from hospital treatments and a drop-in centre.

Declan Jardine, six, from Musselburgh, was diagnosed with an aggressive form of medulablastoma when he was just three – after doctors discovered a brain tumour crushing his skull.

After falling over in his garden, his mum took him to his GP and was immediately referred to hospital, where doctors made the devastating find.

After having 90 per cent of the tumour removed, the youngsters condition is incurable, but as long as he remains stable, his family are hopeful he will survive.

Vicky said: “If it wasn’t for CCLASP I honestly don’t know where I’d be today.

“People think they know what you are going through, but until you are in that position yourself you have no idea what it feels like. That’s what makes CCLASP special, we have all experienced similar things.

“Declan is my little hero. He can never be cured but for him to remain stable is the best we can hope for.”

CCLASP was born from the personal experience of Valerie and Bill Simpson following their son’s diagnosis of leukemia 23 years ago. Following his recovery, they wanted to use their experience to help others.

She said: “We exist only through our enthusiasm and other people’s generosity. I know that Ocean Terminal customers, staff, suppliers and local choirs will do everything they can to help.”

Michelle Macleod, deputy centre manager at Ocean Terminal, said: “The true meaning of Christmas is about families and it’s also about those in difficult circumstances. As a centre and a community, we are humbled to be able to make a small contribution.”