Hawkinge mum on mission to raise awareness of Childhood Cancer

Contributed by editor on May 20, 2016 - 09:55 AM


Alison Kydd is a mum of two children living in Hawkinge who is fighting to raise awareness of Childhood Cancer.



...  it changed our lives forever .....

Bone cancer

Seven years ago her daughter Caitlin was diagnosed with a primary bone cancer called Ewing's Sarcoma.

Alison said: "As you can imagine it changed our lives forever. Caitlin endured a long year of horrific treatment which consisted of 14 rounds of aggressive chemotherapy and life saving surgery where the 18cm tumour was removed along with her femur and muscle and replaced with an extendable titanium prosthesis.

Caitlin in September 2013 during her high dose chemotherapy


"Thankfully, aged 7 she went into remission. She had to learn to walk again and had daily physiotherapy for two years while catching up on all the schooling she missed and clawing back her childhood.


"By a cruel twist of fate, at three years in remission, she relapsed. She now had to face an even more rigorous treatment regime with high dose chemotherapy, a stem cell transplant and another limb salvage operation replacing her elbow and humerus with a titanium prosthesis.

Wonderful news

"The wonderful news is that Caitlin is now two and a half years in remission and, despite living with the awful and debilitating side effects of her cancer and treatment, she is doing well thanks to her incredible attitude and positive disposition."

Caitlin aged 11 in 2013 after her high dose chemotherapy and stem cell transplant


Raising awareness

Alison, who will be meeting with Folkestone and Hythe MP Damian Collins today, explained: "This experience has forced me to become very passionate about raising awareness of Childhood Cancer.

"Raising awareness is crucial as most children are diagnosed late into their illness which leads to treatment having to be much more aggressive and intense, and survival is much less likely. Ten children are diagnosed with cancer in the UK every day and despite some advancements, too many still lose their lives. Only three new drugs have been developed in the last twenty years compared to over eighty in ten years for adult cancers.

"Childhood Cancer is not known or understood well enough to allow for early diagnosis, there is little research carried out compared to adult cancers to make a difference. People, including ourselves, do not recognise the signs early enough and many GPs admit that they do not have any formal training in how to spot childhood cancer.


"This late diagnosis, along with archaic protocols due to lack of research, means that cancer remains the most common cause of death by disease for children. This is a frightening state of affairs when faced with the news that your child has cancer.

"Early diagnosis is key to survival, and awareness is crucial to get that early diagnosis. Awareness will lead to funding and greater research which in turn will bring kinder treatments and potentially save lives."

The Child Cancer Awareness Card


Childhood Cancer Awareness Month

"September is Childhood Cancer Awareness Month (CCAM) worldwide and one of the things that we encourage is wearing gold ribbons. Please could I asked you to wear a gold ribbon and encourage your staff to do so in September? Some Members of Parliament are changing their Facebook profile pictures for gold ribbons too."

Ribbons can be purchased from Clic Sargent website here.

Please take a look at our campaign Facebook page  where you can see all those who are supporting, and all the buildings here in the UK and across the world that are glowing gold in September to help raise awareness.

Alison said: "I truly hope that you will support us and all the children who are living with the long term side effects of having cancer and those who have passed away from this dreadful disease, knowing that you are making a difference to those who will be diagnosed in the future."

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