In July 2011, Harvey Nelson, a five-year-old boy was diagnosed with cancer. During the time he spent in hospital he was kept entertained by a children’s magazine called CBeebies, and he was particularly entertained by the Mister Maker character. The Make a Wish Foundation is an organisation which gives children who are suffering from life-threatening conditions the opportunity to have a wish.Harvey’s wish was to meet Mister Maker in person.
Make-A-Wish arranged for Harvey, who is from Bracknell, to attend the LolliBop Festival in Regent’s Park on 19 August, where he was able to watch Mister Maker’s performance before heading backstage for a very special tea party. Harvey’s favourite Mister Maker craft is sock puppets – so he was thrilled when he was given a goody bag which included the materials to make some of his own!
Harvey was diagnosed with Clear-cell Sarcoma in July last year – on the same day that his younger sister was born.Harvey’s Mum, Emma, had noticed blood in his urine so took him to the doctor, who suspected he had an infection.
On the day Emma went into labour Harvey’s Auntie took him back to the doctor who sent him to hospital after finding a lump – a blood test revealed he had cancer. Harvey started chemotherapy, then in October 2011 he underwent surgery to remove the tumour and his kidney. He then endured further bouts of chemotherapy, blood transfusions and radiotherapy. Harvey has now finished his treatment but has lots of follow-up scans in the coming weeks.
Harvey’s illness has had a profound effect on the family and juggling taking Harvey to hospital as well as looking after the other children has been tough.Harvey’s brothers, Tyreese, 11, and Lennox, eight, have also found the past year very difficult and at times felt left out. Emma said: “The wish was something special for all the family to enjoy and was a great day for not just Harvey but his brothers too. So much got cancelled last year that they became very upset when their teachers asked them to write about their summers. This year the wish gave them lots to write about, which was a real positive.”
There are currently 20,000 children and young people in the UK fighting a life-threatening condition and this year alone 1,400 children will turn to Make-A-Wish to have their wish granted. The charity needs to raise £6.8 million in 2012 and receives no government funding or lottery grants – so every donation really does count.
To make a donation to Make-A-Wish please visit www.make-a-wish.org.uk or telephone 01276 40 50 60.