Two-year-old with brain tumour inspires funds drive

PUBLISHED: 06:00 24 May 2013

Susie, Orla and Simon

Susie, Orla and Simon

Archant

A HUGE fundraising effort has been launched in aid of a toddler suffering from an inoperable brain tumour.

When Orla Hermitage was just 10 months old, her parents found out the devastating news that she had a Glioblastoma Multiforme, and they were told to prepare for the worst.

“It is every parent’s worse nightmare,” said her mother Susie.

Now the Welwyn Round Table has thrown its weight behind efforts to help the family.

The little girl spent weeks in intensive care fighting for her life at Addenbrooke’s Hospital, in Cambridge.

Amazingly, she pulled through and is now approaching her second birthday – the family did not think she would make her first.

“She is doing remarkably well but it is a waiting game, we do not know how long we have,” Susie told the WHT.

Over the past year the family has had support from two charities, The Sick Children’s Trust and Keech Hospice.

Susie, 32, said: “They [Keech] are just absolutely fantastic – especially our nurse Louise.

“They offer so much support and you can also talk to other parents in similar situations.

“We go there all the time and when we need them they come to us.”

Susie’s brother-in-law, Rob, suggested raising money for the two charities that are close to Susie and her husband Simon’s hearts.

Welwyn Round Table has agreed and has raised more than £20,000 in honour of the Old Stevenage family.

“We are incredibly grateful, the money will help other people in our situation,” Susie said.

Jonathan Midgley, 44, who is chair of the Welwyn Round Table, said: “Most of us have children so it was very close to our hearts.

“Everyone was more than happy to support them.”

Earlier in the year the group put on a charity ball and managed to raise more than £10,000. More recently they cycled from Whitehaven to Whitby for Orla.

Twenty-four men took part over the first bank holiday in May, and nearly all of them completed the 175-mile ride.

Mr Midgley, of Normans Lane, Welwyn, said: “It was pretty tough, as the weather has been so bad we had not been able to train as much as we would have liked.

“Pretty much everyone completed, no-one gave up just because of exhaustion which was quite pleasing.”

They hope to have raised around £12,000 from the coast-to-coast challenge and donations can still be made to http://charitygiving.co.uk/welwync2c


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