A CHESTER businesswoman has joined an army of fundraisers working to boost funds for a hospital appeal led by a toddler with leukaemia.
Emma King, who owns The Spotty Pig Craft Café in Newtown, became inspired to help Alder Hey Children’s Hospital in Liverpool after three-year-old Erin Cross was diagnosed with acute lymphoblastic leukaemia shortly after her second birthday.
Emma contacted Erin’s parents, Sarah and Antony, to tell them she would like to sell an animal in her craft café for children to paint. With each sale a donation would be made to Alder Hey Oncology Unit.
Erin, from the Bache, Upton, is leading a campaign in the north of England to raise £30 million for Alder Hey to open a new world class children’s hospital in 2015.
Money raised by the appeal, called the Land of Remarkable People, will be used to fund vital research and provide life-saving equipment and arts and play activities.
Erin’s family felt extremely touched by Emma’s kind suggestion.
Mum Sarah said: “The animal we chose for people to paint was a pony, because of Erin’s obsession with ponies which came after a visit to the Spotty Pig Craft Cafe in June.
“In the run-up to Father’s Day, Emma opened her craft cafe on her day off so Erin could make Father’s Day gifts for her daddy.
“Erin can not go in busy public spaces because her suppressed immune system leaves her at risk of infection.
“Emma realised this, and so Erin could make her daddy some handmade gifts she did a one to one with Erin.
“It was lovely.”
Since then, Erin has developed a big love of ponies and has a huge My Little Pony collection.
“We are absolutely over the moon at Emma’s ‘Paint a Pony’ suggestion, it means so much to us all,” added Sarah.
Since Erin’s diagnosis, her family and friends have raised thousands of pounds for Alder Hey in her name.
Last month a group of former pupils taught by Erin’s father, Antony, a teacher at Bishops’ High School, competed in Tough Mudder.
This is a 12-mile assault course designed by the Special Forces, followed by a 26-mile marathon the next day, raising £1,460.
Sarah said: “Alder Hey saved our daughter’s life and have always felt she is in the best possible hands.
“The team at Alder Hey have been amazing. They have been an incredible support for our entire family, from diagnosis and right through the treatment. we need the support of the local community, corporate donors, businesses, and our charity patrons.
“Please do something remarkable and donate to Alder Hey Children’s Charity.
“Every penny raised will really make the difference to the lives of children in Alder Hey now and literally millions of children in the future.”
Erin, who doctors say has an 80-90 percent chance of making a full recovery from Leukaemia, is now undergoing her maintenance cycle of chemotherapy and mum Sarah says she is doing really well.
For more details on the fundraising campaign search for ‘Erin’s Fundraising Friends’ on the social networking website Facebook.
See full story in the Chester Leader