Eight-year-old puts best foot forward to help find cure for cancer which took her mummy
A little girl who lost her mum to a brain tumour marked what would have been her 33rd birthday with a sponsored walk to find a cure for the disease.
Phoebe Hope Vines, who is now being brought up by Tetford grandparents, Claire and Steve Vines completed the eight-mile hike on Sunday 7th October from Skegness to Ingoldmells with 13 friends and family members. To date she has raised close to £5,000 to help find a cure.
Becky Vines was diagnosed at the age of 23 with a glioblastoma multiforme (GBM), a highly aggressive brain tumour. She defied the odds and gave birth to “miracle baby” Phoebe and outlived her bleak 12-month prognosis, surviving for nine years.
The young mum underwent surgery three times and endured many months of chemotherapy and radiotherapy, but nothing could save her. Becky passed away aged 31 at the home she and Phoebe shared with Claire and Steve.
Claire said: “It was such a shock to learn that brain tumours kill more children and adults under the age of 40 than any other cancer – with Becky being one of them. Historically just 1% of the national spend on cancer research has been allocated to this devastating disease, which is absolutely not right! I am so proud of what Phoebe is doing for Brain Tumour Research in Becky’s memory.”
Claire added: “Phoebe had always known she was going to lose her mum and now Steve and I are her moma and popa. Becky’s tumour was stable for six years, but its presence was always there, casting a shadow, and it was as if we were living on a knife-edge.
“The walk felt like something positive to do after a difficult day remembering Becky on her birthday. Phoebe has raised over £4,700 to date, including taking part in Brain Tumour Research’s Grand Union Canal Walk of Hope just a couple of months after losing her mum, to help find a cure for brain tumours and bring hope to future patients. We hope people will be kind enough to help her reach her target of £5,000.”
Michael Thelwall, Head of Community Fundraising at Brain Tumour Research, said: “We are very grateful to Phoebe and Claire for their continued support. Becky’s story reminds us that for too long, brain tumours have been a neglected cancer and we cannot allow this desperate situation to continue. Sadly less than 20% of those diagnosed with a brain tumour survive beyond five years compared with an average of 50% across all cancers.
“The money raised by Phoebe will help us to fund dedicated UK Research Centres of Excellence where scientists are focused on improving outcomes for patients and, ultimately, finding a cure.”
To make a donation go to www.justgiving.com/fundraising/beckysbattlers
For further information, please contact:
Liz Fussey at Brain Tumour Research on 07811 068357 Liz@braintumourresearch.org
Notes to Editors
Brain Tumour Research is the only national charity in the UK dedicated to raising funds for continuous and sustainable scientific research into brain tumours, and we are a leading voice calling for greater support and action for research into what scientists are calling the last battleground against cancer.
We are building a network of experts in sustainable research at dedicated Centres of Excellence whilst influencing the Government and larger cancer charities to invest more nationally.
We welcome recent funding announcements for research into brain tumours from the UK Government and Cancer Research UK – £65 million pledged over the next five years. However, this potential funding of £13 million a year comes with a catch – money will only be granted to quality research proposals and, due to the historic lack of investment, there may not be enough of these applications that qualify for grants from this pot.
We want research funding parity with breast cancer and leukaemia. We are calling for a £30-35 million investment every year for research into brain tumours in order to fund the basic research groundwork needed to accelerate the translation from laboratory discoveries into clinical trials and fast-track new therapies for this devastating disease.
The Brain Tumour Research charity is a powerful campaigning organisation and represents the voice of the brain tumour community across the UK. We helped establish and provide the ongoing Secretariat for the All Party Parliamentary Group for Brain Tumours (APPGBT). We are supporting the crucial APPGBT 2018 Inquiry into the economic and social impacts of brain tumours and will publish their report in the autumn. We are also a key influencer in the development strategy for the Tessa Jowell Brain Cancer Mission.
Key statistics on brain tumours:
- Brain tumours are indiscriminate; they can affect anyone at any age
- Brain tumours kill more children and adults under the age of 40 than any other cancer
- Historically, just 1% of the national spend on cancer research has been allocated to brain tumours
- In the UK, 16,000 people each year are diagnosed with a brain tumour
- Brain tumours kill more children than leukaemia
- Brain tumours kill more men under 45 than prostate cancer
- Brain tumours kill more women under 35 than breast cancer
- Less than 20% of those diagnosed with a brain tumour survive beyond five years compared with an average of 50% across all cancers
Please quote Brain Tumour Research as the source when using this information. Additional facts and statistics are available from our website. We can also provide case studies and research expertise for the media.